EPA Finalizes Plan to Reduce Pollution from Non-road Vehicles

Washington, DC - The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is adopting new standards to reduce pollutants for the first time from several groups of non-road engines including large industrial engines, snowmobiles and all-terrain vehicles. When fully implemented, these standards will remove more than two million tons of pollution each year including more than one million tons of hydrocarbons (HC) and nitrogen oxides (NOx) and 1.3 million tons of carbon monoxide (CO), equivalent to removing the pollution from more than 32 million cars every year.

"If left unregulated, pollution from these sources will continue to increase," said EPA Administrator Christie Whitman. "When fully implemented, this action will not only protect public health, but will help restore the view of our nation's treasured scenic parks and wilderness areas."

The health benefits of this action are significant. It would annually avoid approximately 1,000 premature deaths, prevent 1,000 hospital admissions, reduce 23,400 cases of asthma attacks and prevent 200,000 days of lost work. Controlling these pollutants will also reduce exposure to CO and air toxics from engines operated in warehouses, ice-skating rinks, or other enclosed areas, where personnel who work with or near the equipment can experience increased exposure. The fuel savings of this action are more than 800 million gallons, at a savings of $500 million annually.

Although these different kinds of engines are combined into one rulemaking, the new requirements reflect differences in the way each type of engine is designed and used. All of these standards apply only to new engines produced in future years and have no effect on existing engines.

One engine group affected is large industrial spark ignition engines. These engines are used in a variety of industrial applications such as forklifts, airport baggage transport vehicles and electric generators. EPA is adopting standards set by California in 1998 to be effective nationwide in 2004, with stricter requirements effective after 2007. EPA expects fuel savings and substantial reductions in NOx emissions, which contribute to ground-level ozone or smog.