Last week, at the Georgia Motor Trucking Association (GMTA), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 4 Administrator Mary S. Walker, joined by GMTA President & CEO Ed Crowell, followed up on EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler’s November 2018 announcement and took steps to advance the Cleaner Trucks Initiative (CTI).
The CTI rulemaking will establish new, more stringent emission standards for oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and other pollutants for highway heavy-duty engines.
“The Cleaner Trucks Initiative will support the modernization of heavy-duty truck engines, improving their efficiency and reducing their emissions, which will lead to a healthier environment,” said EPA Region 4 Administrator Mary S. Walker. “The reduction of NOx emissions from heavy-duty vehicles continues to be a clean air priority for this administration.”
“Since the mid-1980’s, newly-manufactured trucks have reduced emissions of both NOx and PM by over 98% even as freight volumes grew exponentially,” said Georgia Motor Trucking Association President & CEO Ed Crowell. “GMTA looks forward to continuing that record of improvement and encourages all industry participants to offer suggestions.”
Through this Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR), EPA is seeking input from the public and interested stakeholders. This rulemaking will also offer opportunities to streamline and improve certification procedures to reduce costs for engine manufacturers. This action follows on the petitions from over 20 organizations, including state and local air agencies, to revise and promulgate more stringent NOx standards.
From 2007 to 2017, U.S. NOx emissions dropped by more than 40%, but there is more work to be done. Today, over 100 million people live in areas of nonattainment for ozone and particulate matter (PM), and according to EPA estimates, heavy-duty vehicles will continue to be one of the largest contributors to NOx emissions — a precursor of ozone and PM formation — from the transportation sector in 2025. Updating these standards will result in significant mobile source NOx reductions, which will aid communities across the country in achieving ozone and particulate matter attainment with EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards program.
EPA last revised NOx standards for on-highway heavy-duty trucks and engines in January 2001. Pursuant to the Clean Air Act, the CTI will provide manufacturers sufficient time to comply with new standards and ensure that updated standards consider feasible emissions control technologies. Working together with state and industry partners, we can achieve environmental results through the pursuit of commonsense regulations that encourage economic growth.
EPA intends to publish a proposed rule in early 2020.
Learn more about the Cleaner Trucks Initiative here: https://www.epa.gov/regulations-emissions-vehicles-and-engines/advance-notice-proposed-rule-control-air-pollution-new