WASHINGTON — The EPA says it has developed a diesel engine that would meet near-zero emissions standards without the need for elaborate after-treatment devices, Automotive News reported Wednesday. The agency wants companies to commercialize the engine for vehicles, including light-duty trucks and cars. International Truck and Engine Corp. will announce an agreement between with the government on Thursday in a joint effort to bring the engines to market. Advance notices of the Thursday announcement say the EPA and International are forming a testing and development partnership, Automotive News reported. The partnership looks to make diesel engines more applicable to passenger vehicles, build cost-effective light-duty and heavy-duty diesel engines without after-treatment devices to treat lung-damaging smog, and expand employment in the diesel engine industry. EPA engineers and officials call the technology put into the new engine “clean diesel combustion.” The agreement is concurrent with President Bush signing the Clean Air Nonroad Diesel Rule today, according to a published statement by the EPA. The rule is intended to cut emission levels from construction, agricultural and industrial diesel-powered equipment by more than 90 percent and remove 99 percent of the sulfur in diesel fuel by 2010.