Federal Officials Move to Limit GHGs from Heavy-Duty Trucks

On August 16, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in conjunction with the White House, announced the final rule for reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHGs) and increasing fuel economy standards for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles (such as ready mixed concrete trucks), known as Phase 2. According to EPA, the Phase 2 rule is "expected to lower CO2 emissions by approximately 1.1 billion metric tons, save vehicle owners fuel costs of about $170 billion, and reduce oil consumption by up to 2 billion barrels over the lifetime of the vehicles sold under the program."

The final rule’s focus is divided among different types and classes of trucks. There are also separate standards for trucks versus engines. Ready mixed concrete trucks will fall into the "vocational vehicles" standard: model years (MY) 2021 through 2027 will have to comply with the requirements in the vocational vehicle standard and the engine standard in order to meet the rule’s target emissions and fuel consumption reduction requirements. The focuses within the vocational vehicle standard for meeting the rule’s requirements include and suggest "vehicle weights and driving cycle, and chassis" as well as possibly "transmission, driveline, lower rolling resistance tires, workday idle reduction technologies, weight reduction, and some application of hybrid technology." NRMCA’s testimony before and comments to EPA/NHTSA when the rule was proposed focused heavily on the lack of opportunity for weight reduction, idle reduction and the high consumer cost of compliance for such a rule.

Lastly, the final rule also holds implications for refurbished or redesigned trucks, commonly known as glider kits. Specifically, "EPA is requiring that engines from donor vehicles installed in new glider vehicles meet the emission standards applicable in the year of assembly of the new glider vehicle..." However, there are a few exceptions relating to engines used in glider kits, the year they were manufactured and how many glider kits the company produced.
Click here to view the rule, fact sheet and other related materials. For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at kwalgenbach@nrmca.org.

National Ready Mixed Concrete Association