The Florida Department of Environmental Protection is using federal dollars to help some schools in north Florida get greener.
DEP announced Thursday that it had completed a $250,000 federal grant project that allowed for 199 buses in 10 rural school districts to be refitted with devices that reduce harmful tailpipe emissions. The diesel oxidation catalysts reduce children's exposure to diesel exhaust and reduce pollution from diesel school buses by about 50 percent, according to DEP. The counties that participated were Calhoun, Franklin, Gadsden, Gulf, Holmes, Jackson, Liberty, Wakulla, Walton and Washington.
On Wednesday, DEP presented Leon County school officials with a ceremonial check for $90,000 from U. S. Environmental Protection Agency programs. Of the total, $50,000 will pay for students at Nims Middle School to participate in DEP's Learning in Florida's Environment (LIFE) program. Another $40,000 will be used at two other Leon County schools to reduce lighting and water used in irrigation.