EPA Lists Truck Standards for 2027
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has published its most recent final rule regarding regulations for heavy-duty trucks. The entire document is over 1,100 pages long. Would you be willing to settle for an abridged version?
Here are just a few of the regulations for the 2027 model year:
- Reduced tailpipe NOx limits to a level 80%-plus below the current standard.
- These limits will be:
- 0.035 grams per horsepower-hour at normal operation.
- 0.050 grams per horsepower-hour at low load.
- 10 grams per horsepower-hour while idling.
- These limits will be:
- Warranties for trucks must be increased from 100,000 to 450,000 miles.
- Useful life limits must be increased from 435,000 to 650,000 miles.
- Reduced particulate matter limit by 50%.
The middle two reasons may at first come as a shock: why does the EPA care how long a truck lasts? As trucks get older, would they not be replaced by newer, less polluting vehicles? The answer is surprisingly simple: the longer a truck goes without being replaced, the fewer number of trucks that need to be produced, where the production of a new truck can be very energy intensive and emit pollution in itself.
The EPA estimates that these regulations will add $2,300 to the cost of a vehicle for the end user.
Industry Stakeholder Reaction
The rule has been met with mixed responses from the trucking industry. While the Truckload Carriers Association (TCA) is against pollution, its president Jim Ward worries that now through 2027 is not the time to place such strict regulations on the trucking industry, when fleets are already having enough trouble getting their hands on any truck at all.
“TCA maintains that a more comprehensive strategy is needed to guide fleet advancements, that realistically accounts for ongoing equipment shortages and price increases, and encourages solution-maximizing technology without restricting equipment options prematurely… We are committed to continuing to innovate in this space and our association is working with fellow stakeholders to advance climate-positive outcomes, in a forward-thinking, but practical manner, that thoroughly considers present challenges,” Ward said in a statement.
Trucking regulations generally have two systems of requirements: ones for new manufacturing, and ones for what trucks are allowed on the road. For instance, in California, trucks with diesel engines from 2009 and earlier are about to become prohibited from being driven.
These 2027 regulations do not limit the trucks you can drive now, but as time moves forward, it will slowly phase in to become the majority of heavy-duty vehicles.
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