AGC Releases Final Report on Alternatives to Government Mandates for Diesel Retrofit
A joint effort by the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) looked at ways to reduce emissions from in-use construction equipment and assesses incentives that would appeal to the construction industry.
This effort has resulted in a newly released report that identifies viable alternatives to government mandates for diesel retrofit. It also seeks to help industry overcome regulatory, economic and other barriers that impede the adoption of cleaner off-road diesel technologies.
The report relies on significant industry input and offers recommendations that will assist public agencies in selecting retrofit incentives that balance contractor business and economic concerns with the nation’s goals for cleaner air. AGC is pleased that the report recognizes the harm in any government action that would devalue a company’s equipment or restrict competition by discriminating against contractors on the basis of their existing equipment.
According to the report, monetary grants appear to be the most favored incentive among equipment owners and air quality agencies. Reducing off-road emissions requires investments that do not pay for themselves in operating cost savings, the report notes. As federal, state, and local governments evaluate incentives for voluntary efforts to clean up legacy diesel engines, AGC believes addressing funding constraints should be a primary goal.
Emissions from off-road diesel engines will continue to be a source of air pollution for a number of years because EPA’s standards for new equipment will not fully take effect for at least a decade and existing equipment can last 20 to 30 years, sometimes even longer. A growing number of government agencies and lobbying groups are demanding that construction contractors retrofit their old fleets, even though the engines remain legal to operate as they are.
This final report reflects discussions held at AGC’s 2005 Annual Convention (based on a January 2005 draft of the report) and comments received from the construction industry. It will supplement the related efforts of a federal advisory workgroup on clean diesel and retrofit issues. AGC currently serves as co-chair of the construction sub-group, tasked with providing guidance and recommendations to EPA on how best to expand retrofitting in the construction industry.
This report was prepared for the EPA Sector Strategies Program, which works with specific industry sectors, like construction, to address the most significant impediments to better environmental performance. For a copy of the full final report, Emission Reduction Incentives for Off-Road Diesel Equipment Used in the Port and Construction Sectors, visit AGC’s environmental homepage under “Hot Topics” at http://www.agc.org/hottopics.
For more information, contact AGC’s Melinda Tomaino at (703) 837-5415 or email@example.com.
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