EPA says repeal of glider kit regs rests on Clean Air Act interpretation

By Mark Schremmer, Land Line staff writer | 11/13/2017

The Environmental Protection Agency released details regarding its proposed rule to repeal emissions requirements for glider vehicles, glider engines, and glider kits.

In a summary of the rule, the repeal is based on a proposed interpretation of the Clean Air Act under which glider vehicles would be found not to constitute “new motor vehicles,” glider engines would be found not to constitute “new motor vehicles,” and glider kits would not be treated as “incomplete” new motor vehicles.

Under this proposed interpretation, the EPA would lack the authority to regulate glider vehicles, glider engines and glider kits.

“EPA is proposing that the statutory interpretations on which the Phase 2 rule predicated its regulation of glider vehicles, glider engines, and glider kits were incorrect.”

This version of the rule is unofficial as it still hasn’t been published in the Federal Register.

In August, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced that the agency would “revisit” provisions of the upcoming Phase 2 of the greenhouse gas regulations. The Phase 2 proposal builds upon a Phase 1 final rule for model years 2014 through 2018 and for equipment manufacturers to increase fuel economy and reduce carbon emissions by about 23 percent by model year 2027.

The inclusion of glider kits created opposition as many owner-operators have turned to the customizable, less expensive option when purchasing a “new” truck. In a 2016 survey conducted by the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association, 14 percent of owner-operators said they would be buying a glider kit as their next truck. That was 2 percent more than those who were planning on buying new.

“After reconsidering the statutory language, EPA proposes to adopt a reading of the relevant provisions of the CAA under which the Agency would lack authority … to impose requirements on glider vehicles, glider engines, and glider kits and therefore proposes to remove the relevant rule provisions,” the proposal said.

A public hearing on the repeal will be held Monday, Dec. 4 at the EPA’s Washington, D.C., campus.

Public comments on the proposal will be received through Jan. 5, 2018. Comments identified by Docket ID No. EPA-HQ-OAR-2014-0827 may be submitted at Regulations.gov.



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