Division for Air Quality

Press Release Date:  Tuesday, November 29, 2005  
Contact Information:  Elizabeth Robb
(502) 573-3382

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Nov. 29, 2005) – The Campbell County Board of Education, seeking to minimize air pollution harmful to children’s health, has adopted a policy to limit idling of school buses on the school district’s campuses.

“The Division for Air Quality sent us information about the dangers of diesel fuel exhaust to children’s health.  That information, coupled with the need to improve air quality in Campbell County, spurred us to adopt this policy,” Campbell County School Superintendent Anthony Strong said of the board’s unanimous action Monday night.

Less diesel engine idling can help improve children’s health.  Diesel exhaust emits harmful air pollutants, including ozone precursors, particulate matter and carcinogens.  Buses often idle near school air intakes, which bring diesel fumes indoors.  Children also are exposed to exhaust while waiting to board buses.

The new policy will move Campbell County closer to attainment of air quality standards for particulate matter (PM2.5) and 8-hour ozone.  John Lyons, director of the Division for Air Quality, said the school district “has shown strong initiative to protect air quality and improve children’s health, and we encourage other districts to follow their lead.” Campbell County is the second Kentucky school district to adopt an anti-idling policy.  Kenton County schools adopted a similar policy in July.

Idling a diesel engine for one hour burns one-half gallon of fuel.  With a fleet of over 70 buses and diesel costs for the district currently at $2.329 per gallon, the district could save over $5,000 each year.