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SR PD:State cracks down on pollution by diesel trucks, buses
Saturday 13 Dec 2008, 10:16
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

Another good and bad law, gret to cut pollution, bad, will kill more small businesses.

….. The state Air Resources Board unanimously approved the new rule despite warnings it could cause many small trucking companies to stop operating. Many of them rely on the older, dirtier vehicles targeted by the change.


Truckers, loggers, dump truck and bus drivers who run their own businesses and representatives of rural counties demanded the board delay what they called prohibitive regulations during a worsening economic recession.

Board Chairwoman Mary Nichols said California has a legal obligation to clean up pollution and meet federal air standards.

“I don’t think anyone, no matter how committed they are to the cause of public health, truly believes that massive unemployment or large-scale bankruptcies of businesses are good for public health or for the economy,” Nichols said. “We are going to be looking for every possible way to make this rule feasible and livable.”

Air regulators estimated the emissions standards would cost businesses, school districts and transit agencies $5.5 billion over 16 years.

That’s a cost many small- and medium-sized trucking companies told the board they could not afford.

Ron Faulkner, president of Tulare-based Faulkner Trucking, estimated it would cost him $7 million to replace 26 of his 35 aging trucks by 2014. He said he doesn’t know if he can afford it because his company only turns a profit of $50,000 a year.

“If this goes through, we’ll probably close our doors,” he said.


Nearly a million vehicles will have to be replaced or retrofitted with smog traps, filters or cleaner-burning technology beginning in 2011. By 2014, all trucks must have soot filters, and by the time the rule is fully implemented in 2023, no truck or bus in California can be older than 13 years unless it has equipment to cut nitrogen oxide emissions.

Generally, the rule applies to any vehicle larger than a double-wheel Ford F-350 pickup, including those that come to California from other states, Canada and Mexico.

Some military, emergency and vintage vehicles would be exempt, along with private motor homes, snow plows and those driven fewer than 1,000 miles a year. Vehicles in rural counties that meet federal air standards, including Lake and Mendocino counties, and some agricultural vehicles will get extra time to comply.

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