SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The Truck and Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA) and their member companies have filed a lawsuit to delay California’s clean truck regulation.
Dubbed the Heavy-Duty Omnibus (HDO) rule, the measure is designed to slash air pollution from new diesel vehicles by reducing allowable oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions from heavy-duty trucks by roughly 75% below current standards beginning in 2024 and 90% in 2027.
NOx emissions are dangerous to public health by themselves and are precursors to ground-level ozone, or smog.
In addition to cleaning up NOx, the HDO rule looks to institutionalize fine particulate matter (soot) pollution controls and prevent backsliding. These reductions add up to $36 billion in California-wide health benefits from 3,900 avoided premature deaths and 3,150 hospitalizations by 2050, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC).
The lawsuit, filed May 27 by EMA in U.S. District Court in Central California, claims the California Air Resources Board’s (CARB) adoption of the HDO regulation failed to comply with a provision of the federal Clean Air Act (CAA) that requires a four-year lead-time for implementing emissions standards on new trucks.
“Truck and engine manufacturers are proud that today’s modern engines reduce harmful emissions to near zero levels, and we are committed to building still cleaner products – but CARB must provide manufacturers the minimum four years of leadtime mandated by Congress, said EMA President Jed Mandel.
“We acknowledge that the Clean Air Act gives CARB the authority to establish California-specific emissions standards and regulations; however, in doing so, CARB must follow Congress’s requirements. This lawsuit is simply to ensure that CARB follows all of the prescribed rules – one of which is intended to maximize the likelihood of the smooth and successful implementation of new emission standards.”
Many engine manufacturers say they are already working to help clean up emissions.
“We are investing in a range of solutions to lead the industry on the path to a zero-emissions future. We are taking steps today to turn our 2050 targets into real-world products and applications,” said Tom Linebarger, chairman & CEO of Cummins Inc.
Jim Farley, president & CEO of Ford Motor Company, said: “We are moving now to deliver breakthrough electric vehicles for the many rather than the few. It’s about creating good jobs that support American families, an ultra-efficient, carbon-neutral manufacturing system, and a growing business that delivers value for communities, dealers and shareholders.”
Stellantis CEO Carlos Tavares said that his company “will be the industry champion in climate change mitigation, becoming carbon net zero by 2038, with a 50% reduction by 2030. Taking a leadership role in decarbonization, as well as a decisive step forward in the circular economy, is our contribution to a sustainable future.”
Peter Voorhoeve, president of Volvo Trucks North America, said: “Volvo Trucks is committed to lead the commercial transport industry towards more sustainable solutions by advancing electromobility. We will continue to invest in and drive the development of this technology, both globally and right here in North America.”
Mandel concluded: “Manufacturers and our customers should not be forced to short circuit the design, development and integration process, and CARB should not be allowed to circumvent Congress’ clear mandate to provide adequate lead time. We urge the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California to reaffirm the minimum four-year lead time requirement. We hope this matter will be resolved quickly so that manufacturers have the lead time and regulatory certainty needed to develop and build the products our customers – and our economy – depend on.”
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.