CARB workshop participants question whether reefer reg will be legit

| 9/12/2007

Several audience members in a California Air Resources Board workshop audience questioned whether the powerful environmental agency would have the authority to require retrofitting of trailer refrigeration units by December 2008.

CARB has approved a measure that would require units from 2001 or older to be retro-fitted with a CARB-approved device to reduce emissions by 50 percent, and would continually require replacement of older refrigeration units.

The reg is one of several trucking rules set to go in effect next year after CARB obtained power to write, approve and enforce measures aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions as granted by California AB32.

The California agency, however, is still waiting to hear whether the federal Environmental Protection Agency will grant a waiver to allow CARB to enact the law.

Mike Tunnell of the ATA questioned whether CARB has fully considered the economic impact the reefer regulation will have on trucking companies and agreed with other audience members questioning whether EPA would grant a waiver.

“What leads you to believe you will get an approved waiver by the end of the year?” Tunnell asked.

A CARB attorney responded, saying he’d been in touch with EPA attorneys who told him they expected a waiver “ready to be issued by 2008.”

CARB officials told the audience that buying a new or used refrigeration unit effectively sets the clock back on their compliance by seven years. A 2003 unit, for instance, would mean the reefer was legitimate until 2010.

For more information about CARB’s reefer regulation, click here.

– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer