More than 1,000 local authority vehicles are to be fitted with pollution-reduction technology.
Transport minister Baroness Kramer announced that 17 councils would receive grants from the £5M Clean Vehicle Technology Fund.
The successful applicants include Greater London Authority, which will add selected catalytic reduction technology to 400 buses and a fire engine.
In the North West, Merseytravel will fit thermal management technology to 19 buses, and forms of selected catalytic reduction to 17 more.
Kramer said: “The £5M Clean Vehicle Technology Fund means councils can now lead the way on introducing greener vehicles on their local streets.
“We received imaginative applications from local authorities from across England for vehicles including buses, taxis, vans, fire engines and ambulances. All the schemes will lower emissions in busy towns and cities.
“The funding we are providing will result in real public health benefits while supporting skilled jobs and economic growth in the environmental technologies industries.”