Train not on time: CARB slows reefer rule enforcement for six months

By Charlie Morasch, Land Line staff writer | Wednesday, November 26, 2008

California’s reefer rule won’t be enforced beginning next month after all.

The California Air Resources Board announced Tuesday that it was delaying enforcement of its “Transportation Refrigeration Unit” rule until at least June.

The rule affects all owner operators and motor carriers pulling reefers in the Golden State – no matter if they are based in California or not.

California is the only state allowed to create emissions standards stricter than federal ones, although it must obtain a waiver from the EPA. After such a waiver is granted, other states can adopt California regulations.

The state has waited on the EPA for two years. Some media reports have speculated that the new presidential administration will lead to several California waiver requests being approved next year.

On Tuesday, CARB said the rule will be enforced by June, or six months after the waiver is granted after Dec. 31.

To comply with the rule, reefers operating in California must meet CARB’s “in-use performance standards,” which phase in requirements every year for reefers 7 years and older. For instance, on Dec. 30, 2008, transport refrigeration units and TRU gensets built in 2001 and earlier must meet the new standards. In 2009, 2002 and older models must meet the new standards.

Also, owners of reefer units must register with CARB and report information back to CARB’s headquarters. The reefer registration will be required by late January.

More information about the TRU rule is available at: http://www.arb.ca.gov/diesel/tru.

 – By Charlie Morasch, staff writer
charlie_morasch@landlinemag.com

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