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EMA concerned that EPA’s revisiting Phase 2 GHG rules could lead to misaligned regulatory requirements

Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced its intent to revisit provisions of the second phase of the greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency rules for medium- and heavy-duty on-highway trucks and engines that were finalized last year. (Earlier post.) The Phase 2 program builds on the Phase 1 regulations that manufacturers have successfully implemented starting in 2014.

While the new regulations are significantly more ambitious and complex than the Phase 1 requirements, the Truck and Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA) and its members have consistently supported their implementation. EMA is now concerend that EPA’s revisiting the rule could lead to a misalignment of regulatory requirements.

As the primary manufacturers of medium- and heavy-duty engines and vehicles in the United States, EMA members provided tremendous technical input to EPA and NHTSA in the development of the Phase 2 rules, based on our experience implementing the Phase 1 requirements. EMA members strongly support a uniform, nationwide program to apply regulatory controls to the greenhouse gas emissions and fuel efficiency of the heavy-duty products they produce. The collaborative rulemaking approach that EPA and NHTSA used to develop the Phase 2 rules is fostering the adoption of an aligned program by the California Air Resources Board. Aligning the heavy-duty on-highway greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency regulations across the United States is the only way for manufacturers to effectively meet the needs of their customers in the nation’s trucking industry.

—Jed Mandel, EMA President

Commenting on EPA’s announcement to revisit provisions of the federal rules, Mandel expressed concern that reopening the rules could lead to a lack of regulatory alignment. EMA members have already begun investing considerable resources to develop products that will achieve the complex and stringent new standards beginning in 2021 and are concerned that changes to the rules could reduce necessary leadtime and regulatory certainty. In addition, those product development expenditures could multiply if manufacturers are forced to meet differing, and potentially conflicting, requirements.

Right now, the regulators in California are in the process of developing their Phase 2 greenhouse gas rules, and truck and engine manufacturers have significant concerns that reopening the federal rules could lead to the promulgation of different requirements across the nation. An aligned, nationwide program is essential to the success of the Phase 1 greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency rules, and that alignment becomes even more crucial for the technology-forcing Phase 2 program.

—Jed Mandel

Engine and truck manufacturers have worked cooperatively with EPA and NHTSA on programs to reduce pollutant emissions, greenhouse gas emissions, and fuel consumption from medium- and heavy-duty engines and vehicles. Looking forward, Mr. Mandel commented that “we stand ready to bring additional technical input to the agencies to address the concerns that are the subject of the announcement.”

EMA is a trade association representing worldwide manufacturers of internal combustion engines used in applications such as trucks and buses, farm and construction equipment, locomotives, marine vessels, and lawn, garden, and utility equipment, as well as the manufacturers of medium and heavy-duty trucks with a gross vehicle weight rating greater than 10,000 pounds.

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