Release 08-82
September 25, 2008

    Karen Caesar

ARB adopts measures to cut gas emissions from boats
Measures are cost-effective, health-protective

Diamond Bar, Calif. - New regulations adopted today by the Air Resources Board will reduce toxic gasoline emissions from outboard marine tanks and components by up to 4.2 tons per day by 2020, saving consumers about 4.6 gallons of gasoline per year in lost fuel.

"These regulations are another effective weapon in our arsenal to fight poor air quality," said Barbara Riordan, acting ARB Chairman. "They are cost-saving measures that use existing technology to help protect boaters and clean our air."

Gasoline vapors contain smog-forming pollutants along with toxics such as benzene, which have long been associated with cancer and other negative health effects.

Scheduled for implementation starting Jan. 1, 2010, the regulations impose standards on tanks, fuel hoses, primer bulbs and caps and incorporate tools already used by ARB to limit gasoline emissions from portable fuel containers and small off-road engines and equipment. ARB staff worked with representatives of tank and fuel hose manufacturers to develop the new performance standards, and has held public workshops to discuss and develop the rule.

The regulations will costs consumers about $10 more when they purchase a new tank and components, but the new products will save consumers more than $16 per tank per year, assuming gasoline costs $3.50 per gallon. The end result is an estimated overall reduction of about 90 million pounds of gasoline emissions from the state's estimated 200,000 outboard marine tanks over the next 18 years (the time it will take to replace existing tanks and components), and savings to the consumer as well.

The ARB is also developing an enforcement program to ensure compliance with the new regulations.

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.