CARB Warns About Snake Oil Salesmen

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has sent a warning to contractors and truck fleet owners to make sure the diesel particulate filters (or other devices) they install on their equipment to meet the on-road and off-road regulations are verified by the state agency.

In addition to DPFs, fleet owners need to know that there is only one diesel fuel additive approved for use in the state.  Some local governments have been taken in by snake oil salesmen and have tried to require the use of unapproved additives.
Here’s the CARB warning, issued October 12:

“Be aware that some companies are advertising and attempting to sell devices that cannot be used to comply with Air Resources Board (ARB) diesel engine regulations.  Only diesel particulate matter (PM) filters or other devices that have been verified by the ARB to meet rigorous emission reduction and durability demonstration requirements can be used to comply. 

Diesel PM filters that have been verified by the ARB are listed at 

Be sure to check that any device you are considering is on this list.  You may also choose to contact an authorized installer to learn more about verified PM filter retrofit options at: www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/decsinstall/decsinstall.htm.”

Biodiesel no free pass either

The agency added an additional warning about the use of biodiesel or alternate fuels, saying that using biodiesel doesn’t exempt the operator from the diesel programs’ emission requirements.

“In addition, diesel engines that operate on biodiesel or have been modified to operate in combination with diesel fuel and alternative fuels must still meet the same emission reduction requirements as other diesel engines and are not exempt from the regulations.”

“For additional information about in-use diesel engine requirements, visit the Truck Stop at: www.arb.ca.gov/truckstop, call866-6DIESEL (866-634-3735) or email them at 8666diesel@arb.ca.gov .”

The Air Resources Board has adopted a half dozen regulations that require diesel engine owners to replace or repower all of their existing equipment at an unreimbursed cost of billions to these fleet operators. 

These regulations are part of the state’s plan to meet federal ambient air quality standards and to “protect public health.” 

Between 2012 and 2023, nearly all trucks and buses that operate in California with a manufacturer’s gross vehicle weight rating greater than 14,000 pounds will need to upgrade to reduce exhaust emissions. 

Similar clean-up requirements are already in effect for operators of vehicles in drayage operations (ports and rail) and transport refrigeration units (reefers). 

Additionally, comparable requirements for owners of off-road diesel equipment, including equipment used in construction, industrial, and airport operations, will take effect soon. 

The only compliance options allowed under these new stringent regulations are to retrofit with DPFs, repower the machines with new, compliant engines, replace the equipment with new machines or sell their existing equipment out of state.

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