Clean Diesel

Clean Diesel Construction initiative

In Spring of 2011, City Council passed the Clean Diesel Construction ordinance, which instituted new requirements focused on improving air quality on and near City of Chicago construction sites.

For City of Chicago projects issuing Requests for Proposals starting in January of 2014, high polluting diesel equipment (pre-1998 on-road vehicles and pre-US Environmental Protection Agency Tier 1 equipment) will be banned from City construction sites. The ordinance also creates a flexible point-scoring system whereby prime contractors inventory and report a Clean Fleet Score for all equipment and vehicles used on a project. These requirements apply only to City-awarded and funded projects $2 million or greater. The ordinance does not apply to sister agencies’ contracts.

The ordinance is in section 2-92-595 of the Chicago Municipal Code. [View code here].




The City of Chicago is assisting contractors clean up their fleets and improve air quality around City construction sites. Construction equipment engines are very durable and can operate for decades. U.S. EPA has implemented standards to make diesel engines cleaner, but many older pieces of construction equipment remain in operation and predate these standards. Older diesel engines emit large amounts of pollutants such as nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM). These pollutants are linked to health problems, including asthma, lung and heart disease, and even premature death. Equipment is readily available that can reduce emissions from these engines.

      • Illinois Clean Diesel Grant Program. $1 million per year in funds are available for non-road equipment repower. Rebates cover 50% of repower cost (typically $30,000-$100,000). Learn more:
      • Illinois Alternative Fuels Rebate. $1 million per year in funds are available for on-road alternative fuel vehicle or vehicle conversions. Rebates cover 80% of the incremental cost of the alternative fuel vehicle or the cost of the conversion, up to $4,000.
      • U.S. EPA Construction Rebate Program. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made available $2 million in funding for rebates to help public and private construction equipment owners replace or retrofit older diesel construction engines. Rebates will be offered as part of the Diesel Emission Reduction Act, also known as DERA. This is the second rebate program offered since Congress reauthorized DERA in 2010 to allow rebates in addition to grants and revolving loans. EPA will accept applications until January 29, 2014 and anticipates awarding the rebates in February 2014. 

        U.S. EPA is hosting a webinar on how to apply for rebate funds on January 16th. [To learn more click here].

Check this page as more rebate programs become available, and for updates on workshops to help secure funding and how to comply with changing regulation.

Contact to learn more about these incentives.

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