On-road diesel regulations go before ARB

By CMTA Staff

Capitol Update, Dec. 12, 2008 Share this on FacebookTweet thisEmail this to a friend

Today and Friday, December 11 and 12, the California’s Air Resources Board (ARB) will consider adopting the most costly air quality regulations in the history of California.  The "In-Use On-Road Heavy Duty Diesel Vehicle Regulations" will require every heavy duty diesel truck and bus in California to be retrofitted and/or replaced over the next twelve years.  The cost to California’s economy has been estimated to be more than $5 billion.  

This will impact the cost of doing business of any company manufacturing in California that receives raw materials by truck, delivers finished product by truck or in any way depends on the goods movement system in California.  This will make California manufacturers even less competitive with the rest of the nation.

Another cost resulting from the regulation comes from the fact that businesses purchase heavy equipment as a long-term investment in their operations, planning to use them well into the future.  ARB’s new regulations will cause a large number of businesses to prematurely retire these vehicles.  The required equipment will be far more costly than what businesses would have purchased during the normal course of truck turnovers and, in some cases, retrofit devices will be more expensive than the vehicle being retrofitted.   

When companies turn over trucks they sell the old vehicles in an attempt to offset the cost of new equipment.  Trucks are usually replaced when they have provided the greatest value to the owner while still having maximum resale value.  With the new regulations, truck resale values will plummet and the market will be flooded with vehicles that cannot be used in California.   

The Driving Toward a Cleaner California (DTCC) coalition, comprised of trade associations (including CMTA) and businesses, urges the ARB to adopt an alternative proposal that provides more acceptable mileage exemptions and eases the implementation schedule.  This alternative provides a regulatory structure that strikes an appropriate balance between the need to clean the air and minimize the cost to the economy.

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