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EPA to Tighten Emissions Standards for Trucks

Despite the recent regulatory rollbacks, the Environmental Protection Agency announced in Nov. that it will pursue more stringent restrictions on pollution from heavy-duty trucks.

The Cleaner Trucks Initiative is a future rulemaking to update standards for nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions from heavy-duty trucks and engines. NOx emissions standards for these vehicles were last revised in 2001.

Since then, NOx emissions in the U.S. have dropped by more than 40 percent. However, EPA estimates show trucks could be responsible for one-third of total transportation emissions by 2025.

American Trucking Associations commended the Environmental Protection Agency for taking the first step in reviewing and implementing new standards for NOx emissions from heavy trucks.

“As an industry engaged in interstate commerce, ATA strongly favors a single national emission pathway as opposed to a patchwork of state standards,” said ATA Executive Vice President of Advocacy Bill Sullivan. “Clean air and a healthy environment are important to all of us and the trucking industry has repeatedly demonstrated that it can work proactively and in partnership with the federal government in achieving these aims.  We look forward to working with the EPA in developing a standard that achieves nationwide air quality improvements across the country while maintaining a strong and robust economy.”

According to the EPA’s initiative summary, “Updating these standards will result in NOx reductions from mobile sources and could be one important way that allows areas across the U.S. to meet National Ambient Air Quality Standards for ozone and particulate matter. Updating the standards will also offer opportunities to reduce regulatory burden through smarter program design.”

“This initiative will help modernize heavy-duty truck engines, improving their efficiency and providing cleaner air for all Americans,” EPA acting administrator Andrew Wheeler said. “We are under no regulatory or court order requirements to launch this initiative. We are doing it because it’s good for the environment.”

“Clean air is an issue that affects all of us,” said ATA Vice President, Energy & Environmental Affairs Counsel Glen Kedzie. “ATA has worked with EPA in the past to make sure emissions standards – like the current NOx rule and Phase II of the greenhouse gas emissions rules for heavy-duty vehicles – are not just achievable, but that they are indeed achieved. ATA and its members are constantly purchasing newer, cleaner, more efficient vehicles, and, as a result, we have achieved historic reductions in emissions of all kinds. That is a track record we are not only proud of but that we look forward to continuing into the future.”

As part of this effort, ATA is convening a task force to weigh solutions and principles to address the issue of NOx emissions.

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You are here: Home News In Brief EPA to Tighten Emissions Standards for Trucks