streamlines regulations for car and truck fuel conversion systems
The United States Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) has updated rules making it easier for manufacturers
to sell fuel conversion systems. The conversion systems allow
vehicles to run on alternative fuels, which may appeal to consumers
concerned about energy security, fuel costs, or emissions.
These changes reflect the EPA’s interest in encouraging innovation
and spurring conversions that optimize clean air and clean energy
technologies. It is also in keeping with the president’s January
18, 2011 executive order, which directs agencies to identify
and consider regulatory approaches that reduce burdens and maintain
flexibility and freedom of choice for the public.
The revised procedures will vary based on the age of the vehicle
or engine being converted. EPA has found that the procedures
for older vehicles and engines can be streamlined while maintaining
environmental safeguards. As opposed to a one-size fits all approach,
EPA’s process is now based on whether a vehicle or engine is
new, intermediate age, or outside its expected useful life.
Conversion systems alter an existing vehicle or engine to enable
it to run on a different type of fuel. An example of this type
of conversion includes switching a car designed for gasoline
to run on compressed natural gas. While properly engineered conversion
systems can reduce or at least not increase emissions, poorly
designed systems can lead to much more pollution.