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CA Crackdown on Diesel Emissions

09/04/2007

In Late July, California air-quality regulators adopted the country's toughest emission standards for off-highway diesel vehicles such as bulldozers and airport baggage trucks. Regulations on emissions from backhoes, forklifts, and other diesel equipment will be phased in gradually beginning in 2010.

Replacing old diesel engines is projected to eliminate 48 tons of nitrogen oxide and 5.2 tons of particulate matter that is released into the air on a daily basis statewide by 2020. Proponents of the legislation say it will help to save billions in healthcare costs.

Nonetheless, construction industry executives are concerned about the cost of compliance with this legislation, which they estimate at more than $13 billion. Additionally, they say that, in some cases, the technology to put cleaner engines on the road is not available. Construction companies have asked the California Air Resources Board for an additional five years, until 2025, to have fleets of large vehicles (those with 5,000+ horsepower) comply with the new standards.

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