Canadian trucking group urges caution on biodiesel

| 3/23/2006

The Canadian Trucking Alliance is asking the Canadian government to proceed with caution when it comes to biodiesel regulations.

According to a press release issued by CTA, Stephen Laskowski, the group's vice president of economic and environmental affairs, told the Canadian Council of Energy Ministers on Tuesday, March 21, that there are still some questions that must be answered about biodiesel before any mandate is issued by the government.

“The trucking industry has recently undergone a series of dramatic expenses to virtually eliminate smog-causing emissions from truck engines and fuels,” Laskowski said. “What does biodiesel provide the industry that the current regulatory path does not already achieve?”

Laskowski said the trucking industry already has existing technologies in place to address the issues of greenhouse gas emissions, and he urged the federal government to work with the industry to encourage further use of those technologies.

For example, Laskowski said the government could offer weight exemptions for trucks with auxiliary heating and cooling systems and remove length penalties for trucks and tractors to help improve aerodynamics.

Laskowski said that the government also should examine the impact of biodiesel on post-2002 engines as well as the upcoming 2007 and 2010 engines before mandating a biodiesel blend.

Pointing to fuel filter problems in Minnesota earlier this year that some say were linked to a bad batch of biodiesel, Laskowski said the biodiesel industry must mature if the product is to be accepted by the trucking industry.