State of California
AIR RESOURCES BOARD
State Office Building
1350 Front Street, Room B-109
San Diego, CA
May 26, 1977
77-12-1 Continuation of Public Hearing on Proposed Changes to
Regulations Regarding Allowable Maintenance During New
Vehicle Certification of Light-Duty and Medium-Duty
77-12-2 Status Report Regarding proposed Changes to the Test
Procedures for 1978 and Subsequent Model Light-Duty and
77-12-3 Status Report Regarding Vapor Recovery.
77-12-4 Other Business -
a. Executive Session - Personnel & Litigation
b. Research Proposals
ITEM NO.: 77-12-1
Continuation of Public Hearing on Proposed Changes to Regulations
Regarding Allowable Maintenance During New Vehicle Certification
of Light-Duty and Medium-Duty Vehicles.
Adopt Resolution 77-16.
The views expressed by the automobile manufacturers who responded
to a staff questionnaire and participated in workshops with the
staff indicate that it is technologically feasible to build
vehicles requiring far less frequent emissions related
maintenance than is allowed under current regulations.
Information submitted by the manufacturers leads the staff to
conclude that with the exception of air filter and oxygen sensor
replacements at 30,000 miles, no other emissions-related
maintenance is necessary during the first 50,000 miles of vehicle
operation. For certain maintenance items, however, some
manufacturers strongly object to having their allowable
maintenance limited to the extent that other manufacturers claim
is technologically feasible.
The staff anticipates little opposition on technological grounds
to the imposition of the following maintenance limitations; (1)
adjustment of engine idle speed, engine bolt torque, and valve
lash once after break-in; (2) adjustment of engine valve lash at
15,000 mile intervals; and (3) choke lubrication, adjustment of
drive belts, tension and replacement of spark plugs, oxygen
sensors and air filters at 30,000 mile intervals.
With respect to the manufacturers' legal objections, the staff
believes that the Board clearly has the legal authority to adopt
the proposed maintenance regulations. The manufacturers appear
to have conceded that the Board has the authority to limit
allowable maintenance during the certification process.
ITEM NO.: 77-12-2
Status Report Regarding proposed Changes to the Test Procedures
for 1978 and Subsequent Model Light-Duty and Medium-Duty
The Board should authorize the Executive Officer to conduct a
public hearing regarding proposed technical changes to Title 13,
California Administrative Code, needed to clarify the Board's
The ARB staff is proposing a number of technical changes to the
test procedures for 1979 and later model-year light and medium-duty vehicles, which were last amended by the Board at its
November 23, 1976 meeting. First, the staff proposes to correct
the 0.41 gm/mi non-methane hydrocarbon standard for light-duty
vehicles to 0.39 gm/mi for 1980 and subsequent model-year cars
and light-duty trucks. The staff also proposes replacing the
present high altitude test requirements for emission control
systems with language which clarifies those requirements and
narrows their scope. Third, the staff believes that the medium-duty
vehicle selection procedure should be modified beginning
with the 1979 model year to make it consistent with the EPA
procedure which will take effect that year. Fourth, the staff
suggests that language be added to the evaporative emission test
procedure which clarifies the fact that the interpolated 4,000
and 50,000-mile points must be within the evaporative emission
standards and that these points should also be used to determine
the deterioration factor. Last, it is proposed that ARB test
procedures be updated for consistency with EPA procedures for
model year 1979 and for each subsequent model year. Previous ARB
practice has been to handle minor procedural changes
administratively to maintain consistency with EPA.
ITEM NO.: 77-12-3
Status Report on the California Program for Gasoline Vapor
Recovery During Gasoline Marketing Operations.
None. This is an informational report.
A program to recover gasoline vapors during gasoline marketing
operations began in California in 1973. The purposes of the
program are to reduce hydrocarbon emissions that are by-products
of the evaporation of gasoline and to recover gasoline that would
otherwise be lost through evaporation. Estimates indicate that a
vapor recovery program in California, when fully implemented,
will prevent the emission of 222 tons of hydrocarbons per day and
save as much as 26 million gallons of gasoline per year.
The program is based on gasoline vapor recovery rules that were
developed by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Air
Resources Board, and individual air pollution control districts.
These rules set guidelines for the effectiveness of recovery
systems and say where -- in terms of marketing facilities and
geographic location -- gasoline vapors are to be recovered. As
of today, EPA gasoline vapor recovery rules are required in all
air pollution control districts of these air basins:
San Joaquin Valley; and
South Coast (plus Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties).
The Air Resources Board requires gasoline vapor recovery rules in
the following air basins:
Sacramento Valley (nonrural areas only);
San Joaquin Valley (nonrural areas only); and
South Coast (plus Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties).
In addition, the Bay Area and San Diego Air Pollution Control
Districts had adopted their own gasoline vapor recovery rules
prior to federal and state action. The Air Resources Board staff
is studying the feasibility of extending some vapor recovery
requirements into the Mountain Counties and Lake Tahoe Air Basins
and the rural areas of the Sacramento and San Joaquin Valley Air
Two basic systems -- the balance system and the vacuum-assisted
system -- are used to recover gasoline vapors. In the balance
system, liquid coming into the vehicle fuel tank creates a
pressure that forces vapors through a return line back to the
underground storage tank. In the vacuum-assisted system, an
aspirator, pump, or blower draws the vapors through the return
line. Gasoline service stations have been using one or the other
of these systems, but so far bulk plants and most of the
terminals have been using only the balance system.
As part of the vapor recovery program, certification and test
procedures have been developed to ensure that gasoline vapor
recovery systems meet prescribed standards of efficiency; are
reasonably safe, with respect to fire and industrial hazards; and
are compatible with the vehicles with the systems are to be used.
The performance standard for vapor recovery systems at each fuel
transfer operation specifies that 90 percent by weight of the
vapors displaced during transfer operations be prevented from
being released into the atmosphere. Four systems for use in the
filling of underground storage tanks have been certified; tests
are now in progress on systems that can be used in fueling
vehicles, but to date no systems have been certified. However,
at least one system (a vacuum assisted system) has completed all
aspects of the certification requirements, except for the State
fire Marshal's approval, which is expected shortly.
The recent performance of aspirated assisted and vacuum assisted
systems is leading the staff to consider a more stringent stage
II vapor recovery standard for new system installations, at least
for those areas of California where violations of the ambient air
quality standard for oxidant are severe. The latest system
performance and cost data on systems like the Hasselmann vacuum
assisted appear to support a tightening of the standard.
Previous concerns that vacuum assisted systems would provide only
minimally higher collection efficiency at substantially higher
costs have been allayed. Based on the latest data from system
manufacturers, the staff believes vacuum assisted stage II
systems are now available which cost only $600 more than typical
balance systems when installed at existing service stations.
Problems associated with the vapor recovery program in California
have generally centered around vehicle fueling operations at
service stations. These problems have involved mismatches
between vehicle gas tank fill pipes and vapor recovery nozzles
that are heavier and bulkier than other nozzles; and design
characteristics that have allowed blow-back of gasoline; over-fueling,
spillage, or in rare instances, fire. Efforts by the
Air Resources Board staff, the State Fire Marshal, the Division
of Measurement Standards, and the designers of vapor recovery
systems will serve to eliminate all of the serious problems and
hazards associated with gasoline vapor recovery. Several of the
systems now undergoing the certification process are
substantially improved over typical systems currently in use.