Trucks Would Have Smog Checks under Bill Sent to Governor

The California Legislature today passed a bill to require heavy-duty trucks to finally undergo an emissions inspection and maintenance program, roughly similar to the Smog Checks that car owners have had for decades. SB 210, authored by Senator Connie Leyva and sponsored by Coalition for Clean Air and American Lung Association in California, tells the Air Resources Board (ARB) to set rules for a Heavy–Duty Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance Program to ensure timely repairs that are needed to reduce emissions of harmful pollutants.

“Californians will breathe easier if Governor Newsom signs the ‘Clean Trucks, Clean Air’ bill into law,” said Coalition for Clean Air Policy Director Bill Magavern. “We thank Senator Leyva for her persistence in moving SB 210 through the Legislature.”

Heavy-duty trucks currently do not have a comprehensive inspection and maintenance requirement like the Smog Check program for cars, despite the fact that they account for 82% of California’s diesel particulate matter (PM 2.5), a carcinogenic and toxic air contaminant, and 58% of the harmful oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions from mobile sources. Magavern observed that “research has shown that many heavy-duty vehicles operate with malfunctioning emissions controls, leading to emissions that are up to almost 10 times engine certification standards.” Over 90 percent of Californians live in areas impacted by unhealthy air, and the transportation sector is by far the leading source.

“Governor Newsom’s signature and ARB’s implementation will make California the first state with a Smog Check for heavy-duty trucks,” Magavern added. “It’s about time we stopped giving diesel big-rigs a free pass from the type of inspections car owners have faced for decades.”

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