Press Release

Press Release MassDEP Announces Stakeholder Meetings for Volkswagen Emission Fraud Case Funds

Ten stakeholder meetings to be held across the Commonwealth, from Jan. 29 to Feb. 27
For immediate release:
1/26/2018
  • Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection

Media Contact

Edmund Coletta, MassDEP – Director of Public Affairs

BOSTON — The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MassDEP) will seek public input on mitigation actions to improve air quality by reducing nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions using funds available as a result of a national settlement against Volkswagen (VW) from its emissions fraud case. Ten stakeholder meetings seeking public input will be held across the Commonwealth between January 29 and February 27.

“Following the meetings, MassDEP will develop a plan that will identify mitigation actions to be funded by the VW trust,” said MassDEP Commissioner Martin Suuberg. “We are eager to receive public input on measures to provide environmental benefits that include a reduction of NOx and greenhouse gas emissions, support for the electrification of the transportation system, and the reduction of emissions in Environmental Justice communities.”

From 2008 to 2015, VW illegally programmed more than 590,000 diesel vehicles in the United States to violate federal vehicle emission standards for NOx. In addition to addressing the needs of consumers owning or leasing violating vehicles, the ensuing court settlement required VW to establish a $2.9 billion trust fund to be used to implement eligible mitigation actions to mitigate and offset excess NOx emissions resulting from VW’s illegal conduct. Massachusetts is eligible to receive $75 million over a 10-year period for the mitigation actions. Information about the VW settlement and MassDEP’s early planning work can be found here.

The upcoming stakeholder meetings will inform the public about the types of mitigation actions that may be funded by the trust, and solicit public input about mitigation actions that will maximize the environmental and public health benefits of these investments.

Following input, MassDEP anticipates developing a Request for Information (RFI) to solicit more detailed feedback on possible projects and their costs and benefits. The results of the stakeholder meetings and RFI will be used to develop a Beneficiary Mitigation Plan, which must be submitted to the VW trust fund administrator before funding can be released.

The stakeholder meetings will be held as follows:

Monday, Jan. 29, 2018, 1-3 p.m.

MassDEP Southeast Office, 20 Riverside Dr., 1st Floor Conference Room, Lakeville

Monday, Jan. 29, 2018, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Brockton Public Library, 304 Main St., 1st Floor, Multi-Purpose Room, Brockton

Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018, 2-4 p.m.

Holyoke Community College, 303 Homestead Ave., The Kittredge Center, 3rd Floor, Room 303, Holyoke

Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Holyoke Community College, 303 Homestead Ave., The Kittredge Center, 3rd Floor, Room 303, Holyoke

Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, 2-4 p.m.

MassDEP Northeast Office, 205B Lowell St., 1st Floor, Conference Rooms A & B, Wilmington

Monday, Feb. 12, 2018, 6-8 p.m.

University of Mass/Lowell, Recreation Center, 322 Aiken St., Lowell

Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, 1-3 p.m.

MassDEP Boston Office, 1 Winter St., 2nd Floor, Conference Rooms A, B and C, Boston

Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, 6-8 p.m.

MassDEP Boston Office, 1 Winter St., 2nd Floor, Conference Rooms A, B and C, Boston

Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018, 1-3 p.m.

MassDEP Central Office, 8 New Bond St., 1st Floor, Conference Room 107, Worcester

Tuesday, Feb. 27, 2018, 6-8 p.m.

MassDEP Central Office, 8 New Bond St., 1st Floor, Conference Room 107, Worcester

Members of the public with suggestions on how Massachusetts should invest the VW trust funds are encouraged to attend one of these stakeholder meetings or complete the online VW project survey here.

 

###

Media Contact

Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection 

MassDEP is responsible for ensuring clean air and water, safe management and recycling of solid and hazardous wastes, timely cleanup of hazardous waste sites and spills, and the preservation of wetlands and coastal resources.

Feedback

Tell us what you think