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CARB to Propose Idle-Shutdown for Heavy-Duty Diesel Trucks

7 September 2005

The California Air Resources Board (ARB) will propose requiring diesel trucks with a gross vehicle weight greater than 14,000 pounds be equipped with a non-programmable engine shutdown system that automatically shuts down the engine after five minutes of continuous idling with the goal of reducing emissions.

Trucks with a diesel engine that utilize the idle shutdown system would need to provide other methods—such as an APU—for heating/cooling the cabin and powering accessories when the truck is not being driven.

The new engine requirements would apply to 2008 and subsequent model year diesel engines. Pre-model year 2008 trucks may need to retrofit.

To avoid incorporating a new engine shutdown system, an engine manufacturer may certify an engine to a NOx idling emission standard of 30 grams per hour. This option is proposed because it may be possible to control NOx emissions during idling. However, this option isn’t likely to become available prior to 2010 because that is when more advanced NOx controls are expected to be used for all heavy-duty engines. (Earlier post.)

If manufacturers succeed in developing engines which meet the NOx idling emission standard, operators would be allowed to idle the main engine continuously to provide cab comfort and electrical power during rest periods, and would not need to install alternative cab comfort devices. However, they would still be subject to the existing five- minute idling restriction when the truck is located within 100 feet of a restricted area.

ARB staff estimates that statewide emission reductions as a result of the policy would be approximately 46 tons per day (tpd) of NOx, 4.2 tpd of ROG, 1,930 tpd (0.7 million tons per year) of carbon dioxide (CO2), and 0.42 tpd of PM emissions in 2010.

For the South Coast Air Basin (including the Los Angeles region), the corresponding emission reductions are estimated as 18 tpd of NOx, 1.6 tpd of ROG, 740 tpd (0.3 million tons per year) of CO2, and 0.15 tpd of PM in 2010.

A public hearing on the proposal is being held on 20 October.

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September 7, 2005 in Diesel, Emissions, Policy | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack (0)

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Comments

A step in the right direction. Maybe it will be considered for cars too.

Wouldn't it be the case, that most trucking companies would simply register their vehicles out of a different state like Nevada?

46 tons per day (tpd) of NOx, thats A LOT! O.o Does that means trucks simply like to let their engines idle? And how many % this 46 tons represent in terms of total NOx? It doesnt help anything if you took a gram off a 10 tons truck ya'know.

There was a story in the news about how truck stops are starting to offer a service for fee which would rent the truck driver a little box that they would hang inside of the cab. The box would provide heat/air conditioning, power (for a TV), internet access, and I believe cable TV.

The idea was to encourage truckers to shut off their engines when making overnight stops. The things were quite popular both with truckers and with trucking companies - they do have to pay a few bucks for the use of the box per night, but the fuel costs of running the engine overnight to keep the AC going were roughly double this.

While the thing that CARB proposes might ultimately help, I am thinking that a quicker way to get this moving is to offer the carrot rather than the stick. Work encourage/require more truck stops to provide this type of service.

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/chronicle/archive/2003/06/16/BU222509.DTL&type=tech

re: “like to idle...”...

Truck operators—especially operators of these very large trucks that can have sleeper cabs—generally idle their engines at truck stops and rest areas during layover hours to provide heat or cooling to the sleeper berth, to operate on-board electrical accessories, to maintain battery charge, and to warm the engine for easy start-up during cold weather.

Truck idling is also significant at warehouse/distribution centers and port terminals where loading and unloading freight require long waiting periods.

Emissions from prolonged truck idling is a significant problem that requires a more systemic solution. In 2001, the Argonne National Lab estimated that some 840 million gallons of diesel fuel were consumed annually in the US by idling long-haul trucks. Maricopa County has bumped that estimate to 1.2 billion gallons per year. Or, as they put it, a loss of fuel equivalent to the Exxon Valdez disaster every 28 hours.

It’s a BIG problem, for consumption, as well as for emissions.

re: out-of-state registration, it doesn’t matter. Regardless of where the truck is registered, if it operates in California, it would need to adhere to the idle-stop regulation.

I drove a truck for a few years and I can tell you that some kind of legislation is long overdue. There is very little that the drivers can do to reduce the amount of idle time and few that even try. Trucking companies offer various incentives to there drivers to reduce idling but the fact is that there is no other way to maintain “comfort” in the cab, and the required power to keep the engine warm and in some case the freight cool. If you don’t think comfort is important, consider how you feel about the driver of the 40,000 lbs vehicle traveling a few feet from your family getting a good night sleep. It makes no sense to simple make a law that limits the amount of time a truck can idle as some state back east have done. The legislation must recognize the necessity of some alternative for providing the required power. It makes more sense to me to require all truck after x date to be equipped with an APU or other alternative power supply in order to enter the state. If the drivers have an option that uses less fuel they will us it. But if you tell a driver waiting to go over Donner Pass in a blizzard that he has to shut down his engine and he has no other way to heat the cab, he’s likely to tell you you’ll have to arrest him. At least the jail will be heated. I think it’s a fairly save bet that if a law is passed that simply requires the drivers to shut down after five minutes or whatever, it will not be possible to enforce, and therefore will have little impact on reducing emission.

Mark nailed it on the last sentance. If it were possible to enforce the "East Coast laws", the drivers would "demand" these APUs, and therefore CA's requirement would be redundant. However, since it is impossible to make such demands, CA's approach is the savvy one.

There are so many ways where the USA can pinch "pennies" on fuel systematically. Doing so will significantly reduce consumption -- even a few percent will make a difference.

The only way I can think of to effectively enforce a no idling law would be at the border. Don’t let the truck in the state if I dose not have the equipment to allow the driver to operate it lawfully. This shifts the responsibility from the driver who does not generally own the truck to the company who is in a position to do something about it. If the company wants to operate in the state it will need to equip its truck or risk having them stopped at the border.

Another angle on this is that these APU’s are now available and a few companies have chosen to use them. That means that they must be close to being economically practical. After all it’s the company that buys the fuel that makes the emissions. If laws are passed that make them required equipment the price can be expected to fall due to economy of scale, and therefore tip the balance further in the direction of profitability for the company in time this may make enforcement unnecessary as the competitive nature of the market will compel companies to use them.

Handing a trucker an idling citation is the same as handing him a note that says "Leave our state and please don't come back". Municipalities in the Northeast had to learn this the hard way.

First let me say that I agree that trucks idle too much. With that said, I do have to point out a few errors in your statements.

Quote***There was a story in the news about how truck stops are starting to offer a service for fee which would rent the truck driver a little box that they would hang inside of the cab. The box would provide heat/air conditioning, power (for a TV), internet access, and I believe cable TV.***Quote

This service is called Idleair. It is around $20 for 10 hours of the service. Is this economical? Maybe for one day. What about the other 299 nights a year? Is it still economical? Also, what am I supposed to do the other 14 hours of 100 degree heat in Los Angeles?

Quote***Another angle on this is that these APU’s are now available and a few companies have chosen to use them. That means that they must be close to being economically practical.***Quote

The cheapest is about $7000 and some are $10,000 plus.

Quote***Don’t let the truck in the state if I dose not have the equipment to allow the driver to operate it lawfully. This shifts the responsibility from the driver who does not generally own the truck to the company who is in a position to do something about it.***Quote

There are nearly 4 million owner operators on the road. An owner operator is just another name for small businessman. Most trucking "companies" are just one guy (girl) and one truck. The vast majority of trucking companies have less than 20 trucks. Some companies are huge, and those are the ones you recognize only because you see them constantly. I have owned 2 trucks and spent about $12,000 on generators.

If I owned 20 trucks and was faced with the ultimatum of spending $160,000 or not going to CA, it wouldn't be much of a choice. For those of us who have spent the money on idle reduction and will be only one of a drastically reduced number of trucks in CA, you will pay a premium for both incoming and outgoing freight.

Now, the second fact about APUs that is going to make rates and hassle for CA go through the roof.

2007 regulations for diesel engines in heavy duty trucks require them to have a special filter on the exhaust. This is called a diesel particulate filter or DPF. A DPF for a class 8 truck (big one) has increased the average price of a new truck over $10,000.

CARB has threatened, and maybe by this time has, made a rule stating that if your truck has a DPF, your APU must also.

My truck is a 2005. My APU will not be ready to be replaced for a long time. If I were to buy a new truck with a DPF I would have some nasty choices to make. I could either buy a DPF for my APU ($$$), buy a new APU ($$$), don't go to CA.

Whatever choice I make, one thing is guaranteed. You will pay more for goods in CA. I am a businessman, I don't drive for fun (well, maybe a little), all of my expenses get passed on to you one way or another. After that sinks in, consider this. You have already paid 3 times for my idle reduction.

After typing out my last post, it really feels like CARB is trying to make it HARDER for me to reduce my idle time.

You do gooders should have work for a living instead of thinking of ways to screw-up a working mans job.

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