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OPEI Comments on California Emissions Regulations
Jul 3, 2006
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In an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) public hearing on California emissions regulations, the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI) stated that industry plans to support EPA's waiver but would need enough lead-time to comply.

OPEI counsel, William M. Guerry Jr. said that the OPEI had agreed to support most aspects of the California rule for the unique California market. However, OPEI had succeeded in persuading California Air Resource Board (CARB) to provide equipment manufacturers with needed phase and flexibility.

California submitted a waiver request to EPA in April 2005 for its regulation on lawn and garden equipment. Guerry told EPA officials that industry could largely support an EPA waiver for the California rule, pending some changes allowing equipment manufacturers more time to comply. Guerry said the California rule would lead to higher prices and fewer consumer choices, especially from small outdoor equipment manufacturers.

EPA has indicated that it will issue proposed regulations for the other 49 states by the end of the year. The agency will take public comment on the California waiver until Aug. 1, 2006. The federal rule will have to be reviewed by the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

Guerry also explained why it was critical for the International Consortium for Fire Safety, Health and the Environment (ICFSHE) to continue with their catalyst safety study to address unresolved questions so that equipment manufacturers will better understand the challenges of building safe and emissions compliant catalyzed equipment.

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