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Environmental groups ask court to keep trailers in GHG 2 reg

Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and a coalition of public health and environmental groups are asking the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit to protect a key trailer provision of greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency standards (GHG 2) for the nation’s heavy trucks.

The Truck Trailer Manufacturers Association (TTMA) has asked the court for a stay of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) standards for freight trailers – one part of the GHG 2 regulation, with an initial implementation date of Jan. 1, 2018. TTMA contends the Environmental Protection Agency doesn’t have the authority to regulate trailers under the Clean Air Act, and EPA last month agreed “to revisit” the matter.

So EDF and its allies filed an opposition to TTMA’s request Oct. 12.

“The trailer provisions of the Clean Truck Standards are based on cost-effective and widely available measures that have long been used by industry leaders, and have been effectively incorporated into state standards for the past decade,” said EDF Attorney Alice Henderson. “It is critical that these common sense protections remain in place to reduce the dangerous pollution that causes climate change and save money for American families by reducing the costs for shipping goods.”

TTMA filed a lawsuit in December of 2016 asking the D.C. Circuit to overturn the portions of the Clean Truck Standards that covered freight trailers, which "contribute significantly" to the emissions from heavy-duty vehicles, according to EDF. EDF and a coalition of public health and environmental groups are intervenors in the case, along with the California Air Resources Board and a coalition of seven states. A three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit will hear that case.

TTMA’s stay request does not include other provisions of the Clean Truck Standards, which cover buses, heavy-duty pickup trucks and vans, garbage trucks, and tractors. 

The Center for Biological Diversity, Natural Resources Defense Council, Sierra Club, and Union of Concerned Scientists joined EDF in opposing the stay request.

The California Air Resources Board and the coalition of seven states – Connecticut, Iowa, Massachusetts, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington – also filed an opposition to the stay request Oct. 12.

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