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EPA Jumpstarts Cleaner Trucks Initiative

Agency seeks input on initiative for cleaner emission standards for heavy-duty trucks

Contact Information: 
Jennifer May-Reddy (
212) 637-3658

NEW YORK  – At the Port of Elizabeth, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Regional Administrator Pete Lopez outlined the concrete steps EPA is taking to advance the Cleaner Trucks Initiative (CTI). Joined by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, the City of Newark and the NJ Motor Truck Association, the Regional Administrator spoke about the CTI rulemaking which will establish new, more stringent emission standards for oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and other pollutants for highway heavy-duty engines. Through this Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR), EPA is seeking input from the public and interested stakeholders.

“The Trucking industry touches nearly every part of our economy. A strong and resilient trucking industry is imperative to maintaining a strong and resilient economy. Through this initiative, we will modernize heavy-duty truck engines, improving their efficiency and reducing their emissions, which will lead to a healthier environment,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “The U.S. has made major reductions in NOx emissions, but through this initiative we will continue to reduce emissions, while spurring innovative new technologies, ensuring heavy-duty trucks are clean and remain a competitive method of transportation.”

“I encourage regional input from industry, community groups, government agencies and other stakeholders on this new initiative,” said EPA Regional Administrator Pete Lopez. “This rule will have a major impact on improving air quality in the future and the reduction on pollutants from heavy duty trucks will help our states meet their air quality goals.”

In addition to Regional Administrator Lopez, Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Port Department Director Sam Ruda, Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and NJ Motor Truck Association Executive Director Gail Toth were also in attendance.

"The Port Authority has been laser-focused on implementing critical environmental programs that will greatly improve the air quality and the quality of life for those who live and work around our transportation facilities,” said Port Department Director Sam Ruda.  “At the port, we have a comprehensive strategy to reduce harmful pollutants, including a program that provides financial incentive for drivers to replace older model trucks with newer ones, as well as programs to reduce emissions from vessel traffic.  We continue to work closely with all of our stakeholders to get input on how we can move forward with additional clean air programs including ones that would migrate to the use of all electric yard equipment and drayage vehicles.”

“The New Jersey Motor Truck Association appreciates the opportunity to provide input for the Cleaner Trucks Initiative,” said NJ Motor Truck Association Executive Director Gail Toth. “The trucking industry is committed to working the EPA to continue the reduction of NOx emissions from heavy-duty diesel engines. We look forward to the development of a national standard, implemented via a streamlined process, that is achievable and reliable.”

This rulemaking will also offer opportunities to streamline and improve certification procedures to reduce costs for engine manufacturers. This action follows on the petitions from over 20 organizations, including state and local air agencies, to revise and promulgate more stringent NOx standards.

From 2007 to 2017, U.S. NOx emissions dropped by more than 40 percent, but there is more work to be done. Today, over 100 million people live in areas of nonattainment for ozone and particulate matter (PM), and according to EPA estimates, heavy-duty vehicles will continue to be one of the largest contributors to NOx emissions — a precursor of ozone and PM formation — from the transportation sector in 2025. Updating these standards will result in significant mobile source NOx reductions, which will aid communities across the country in achieving ozone and particulate matter attainment with EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards program.

EPA last revised NOx standards for on-highway heavy-duty trucks and engines in January 2001. Pursuant to the Clean Air Act, the CTI will provide manufacturers sufficient time to comply with new standards and ensure that updated standards consider feasible emissions control technologies. Working together with state and industry partners, we can achieve environmental results through the pursuit of commonsense regulations that encourage economic growth.

EPA intends to publish a proposed rule in early 2020.

Learn more about the Cleaner Trucks Initiative here:

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