|FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
February 25, 1999
|CONTACT:|| Richard Varenchik
SACRAMENTO - The California Air Resources Board (ARB) Thursday approved a $25 million incentive program to pay businesses and public agencies for reducing nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions below mandated levels in heavy duty trucks, buses, agricultural and construction machinery, and selected other equipment.
The program is expected to encourage reduction of NOx emissions below mandated levels and bring the state cleaner air more quickly than would otherwise have been achieved. NOx is one of the main contributors to ozone, one of the most health-damaging components of smog. The new program, known as the Carl Moyer Program, is named for the late Dr. Carl Moyer in recognition of his work in air quality and his special efforts to reduce air emissions through incentives. Both industry and environmental groups have supported incentive programs as a way to bring the state cleaner air.
NOx reductions from diesel engines will be the main goal of the new Program. About 525,000 heavy-duty diesel trucks and buses are driven throughout California, with another 680,000 diesel engines used in construction and agricultural equipment. These diesel engines contribute about 40 percent of the state's NOx emissions from mobile sources.
The Moyer Program will pay to offset the cost of reducing NOx emissions below the levels called for by current standards, agreements or regulations. In most cases, NOx must be reduced at least 25 percent or 30 percent below current standards; depending on the type of engine involved and whether a new engines is being purchased or an existing engine is being rebuilt or repowered.
For example, a company may be able to buy a new truck for $100,000 which meets the state's minimum emission standards; or buy a lower-emission truck for $125,000. The offsetting cost ($25,000) would be available through the Moyer Program to pay the higher cost of the cleaner truck. This framework would also be used to determine other Moyer Program grants, including those for off-road and other engines, larger marine vessels, locomotives, forklifts, and airport ground support equipment.
Incentives programs are an important strategy in the 1994 State Implementation Plan (SIP), the state's "roadmap" for reducing ozone and meeting federal clean-air mandates. Stringent new emission standards will bring 80 percent to 90 percent of the NOx reductions called for in the SIP. However, the remaining NOx reductions will have to come through incentives such as those proposed in the Moyer Program.
The program will be administered
by the ARB and run through local air districts. The local districts
must match each two dollars of state funding with one dollar of their own,
bringing the total amount available for incentives to $37.5 million.
For businesses or public agencies considering the Moyer Program, cleaner engines can, in some cases, mean improved fuel economy and through it reduced fuel costs. An added benefit is improved image--showing the public a dedication to enhancing the environment and cleansing the air. The Program would be particularly beneficial to companies needing to reduce diesel emissions at trucking yards or shipping terminals in heavily populated areas.
The Moyer Program would provide the added benefit of helping the state's air districts reach clean-air goals in time to meet federal deadlines.
For more information about
the Moyer Program, or to find out which air district represents a particular
city or community, telephone the ARB at 1-800-242-4450. Information
about the Program, and links to some of the participating air districts,
are available on the ARB Internet site at www.arb.ca.gov.
The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.