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Engine Manufacturers Association Cites New Scientific Information in Appeal to California Air Resources Board to Reconsider Listing Diesel Particulate Emissions as Toxic Air Contaminant.

CHICAGO--(Automotive Wire)--July 2, 1999--

Based on new scientific evidence, the Engine Manufacturers Association (EMA) today petitioned the California Environmental Protection Agency's Air Resources Board (ARB) to reconsider its proposed designation of diesel particulate emissions as a toxic air contaminant (TAC).

"We have consistently said that the scientific data that have been reviewed so far are inadequate to support the designation of diesel particulate emissions as a toxic air contaminant," said Glenn Keller, executive director, EMA. "Now, new information from highly respected, independent scientists overwhelms the shaky foundation for the California Board's proposed designation and quantitative risk assessment. The TAC listing of diesel particulate is absolutely not justified."

Keller noted that the EMA and its member companies have a long history of working with environmental regulators, including ARB and the United States Environmental Protection Agency, to reduce emissions and achieve cleaner air. In fact, he noted, today's truck engines emit nearly 70% less NOx and 90% less particulates than in 1987. Meanwhile, diesel offers improved mileage over gasoline, along with greatly reduced emissions of hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide and greenhouse gases.

"If this TAC listing goes forward despite the evidence that it is unwarranted, there is grave risk that the people of California and elsewhere will be denied the environmental and energy efficiency benefits of diesel engines," Keller stated.

"We believe that working together cooperatively, bringing technology and public-interest commitments to the table, we can produce great results in terms of cleaner air, efficient transportation and consumer mobility. Diesel technology is a crucial component of any national energy solution going forward, if the options for consideration are not unjustly limited by government action."

The Air Resources Board on August 27, 1998, adopted a resolution classifying diesel particulate emissions as a toxic air contaminant, and is in the process of finalizing the listing. The EMA petition, in which several other petitioners joined, cites recent reports from the Health Effects Institute and the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Air Science Advisory Committee that show the flaws of the science ARB relied on in making that decision. According to the petitioners, these reports include:

- The October 1998 report of the Environmental Protection Agency's
 Clean Air Science Advisory Committee. CASAC was established under
 the Clean Air Act to provide independent scientific advice to the
 Administrator of the EPA. CASAC reported a preliminary finding of
 numerous flaws in a draft EPA diesel health assessment document
 that relies on many of the same studies used by ARB. The advisory
 group remanded the draft document back for further study and
 editing.

- The June 1999 Special Report of the Health Effects Institute.
 HEI, founded in 1980 and jointly funded by EPA and industry, is
 charged with providing an independent and unbiased source of
 information on the health effects of motor vehicle emissions.
 HEI's new report concludes that key studies relied on by ARB are
 inadequate to provide a scientific basis for assessing risks
 related to diesel.


"ARB is obligated to review and act upon the new evidence that has come to light," Keller stated. "We believe that when ARB reviews these highly authoritative new reports, it will come to the conclusion we have reached: that the TAC listing of diesel particulate is not justified."
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Publication:Business Wire
Date:Jul 2, 1999
Words:535
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