Air Board's Carl Moyer Program a Success -- Achieves Substantial Toxic and NOx Reductions
For immediate release
SACRAMENTO – The California Environmental Protection Agency's Air Resources Board (ARB) today approved a report to the state legislature on an incentive program that has reduced smog-forming and cancer-causing air emissions from diesel engines.
The Carl Moyer Memorial Air Quality Standards Attainment Program reduces oxides of nitrogen (NOx), which contribute to ozone, one of the most health-damaging components of smog, and also reduces cancer-causing particulate matter (PM).
"Carl Moyer projects reduce high diesel emissions in all communities," said ARB Chairman Dr. Alan Lloyd. "I would like to see at least 50 percent of the Moyer projects go to benefit communities that are disproportionately impacted by air pollution," he said.
The governor and legislature have approved $98 million over the last three fiscal years to fund the Moyer Program. In addition, the 22 local air pollution control districts that administer the funding for ARB provide approximately $40 million in matching funds.
Estimated emission reductions from the program's first two years are about 2200 tons per year (TPY) of NOx and about 70 TPY of PM. When third-year projects are implemented, it is anticipated that annual NOx reductions will reach about 4400 TPY and PM emissions about 140 TPY.
The majority of Moyer Program funding has been spent to upgrade or replace diesel engines in city transit buses, school buses, trash trucks and agricultural irrigation pumps. Upgrades to diesel engines can include replacing existing engines with newer, cleaner models and converting to engines powered by alternative fuels or electricity.
The program's emission reductions are achieved by funding the incremental cost of cleaning up diesel engine NOx and PM emissions below the levels called for by current standards, agreements or regulations.
As an example, under the Moyer program, a company purchasing a $100,000 new truck that meets the state's minimum NOx emission standards, can instead buy a $125,000 new truck that beats the NOx standards by at least 30 percent. Moyer funding pays the additional $25,000 for the cleaner truck. This framework is also used to determine other Moyer grants, including those for off-road and other equipment, large marine vessels, locomotives, forklifts and airport ground support equipment.
The program is named for the late Dr. Carl Moyer, a visionary scientist who worked to establish government incentive programs to defray the cost of reducing harmful air emissions. Since diesel engines frequently have a "life" of 20 or more years, the Moyer Program has been particularly effective in replacing some of the state's oldest, highest polluting engines.