These 70,000 vehicles are now illegal on California roads
The final rule in a series of regulations passed 15 years ago goes into effect this week, banning about 70,000 big rigs from California roads.
A set of clean air rules implemented by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) in 2008, and later signed into law as Senate Bill 1, states that any diesel vehicle weighing more than 14,000 pounds and built before 2010 is banned from operating on California roads as. of January 1, 2023.
“Oil emissions are responsible for 70% of cancer risk from airborne toxins,” CARB states on its website. “Therefore, by January 1, 2023, almost all trucks and buses will be required to have 2010 or newer engines to reduce emissions of particulate matter (PM) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx).
The agency estimates that about 200,000 vehicles, including 70,000 large trucks, do not comply with the rule and will be banned from operating in the state, according to KCRA. Exceptions to the rule will be made for vehicles that have had their engine replaced with one manufactured after 2010 and vehicles that travel less than 1,000 miles per year. The law will be enforced by DMV by denying registrations to non-compliant trucks and buses, and CARB’s enforcement unit will conduct commercial fleet audits that may result in citations.
The board said in a memo that most bus and truck fleet owners in the state have already taken the necessary steps to achieve compliance, with 1.58 million vehicles being fitted with upgraded, post-2010 engines.
An even more ambitious plan was recently proposed by CARB to remove all gas and diesel truck fleets from the state’s roads by 2045 and replace them with zero-emission vehicles. The proposed Advance Clean Fleets regulation first targets the busiest trucking areas in the state — around warehouses, seaports and railroads — that the board says disproportionately affect black and brown, low-income and vulnerable communities.
The trucking industry has largely backed away from the ban, especially in light of recent supply chain issues across the country.
“You can’t take a large percentage of vehicles off the road,” Joe Rajkovacz, director of government affairs for the Western States Trucking Association, told KCRA. “With the economy slowing down, it remains to be seen what impact it will have.
Others have said that moving to zero-emission vehicles for all fleets is logistically impossible. “It’s going to hurt us. We don’t really understand how to charge these vehicles,” construction company CEO Jaimie Angus said at a recent hearing on the proposed clean fleet rule. “Those pieces of equipment go home with those men every day, so they’re going to have to be charged from home? How do you compensate that person for that?”
CARB says the years-long push to get old, smog-spewing diesel engines off the state’s roads is essential to ensuring clean air for Californians.
“Because heavy vehicles on the road are such a significant source of pollutants, the Truck and Bus Regulation is one of the most comprehensive and important tools to reduce smog and toxic emissions and protect public health in disadvantaged communities.” wrote the board.