Page images
PDF
EPUB

4 of Public Law 88–206 are not adequate to meet the needs or satisfy the applications now pending in the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare for an air pollution program of financial assistance to State and local governments.

We understand that the estimate of $5 million for control program grants for the fiscal year 1966 budget request will not permit the award of any additional grants for project applications submitted in 1966. This results from the second-year requirements from the applications submitted in fiscal year 1965, and the estimated backlog of applications which cannot be funded this year.

We believe, Mr. Chairman, that this problem merits careful review by your committee.

I would like to thank you most sincerely on behalf of myself and Mr. Dorn for this opportunity to present our views.

Senator MUSKIE. Thank you very much.

I was trying to recall the period for which the original authorization was made. Wasit 3 years?

Mr. WARD. I think so.
Mr. WILLIAMS. I do not know, Mr. Chairman.

Senator MUSKIE. The closing portion of your statement referred to the inadequacy of the present local program support authorizations. I think it was 3 years, so clearly next year we will be evaluating the experience of the program.

I think the original Senate bill provided for 4 or 5 years, and we acceded to the House request for 2 or 3, in order that we might be able to act again on the level of appropriations.

It is clear on this point the House committee was wiser than we were, and already the level of appropriation is inadequate, although I would like to point out that the Senate bill would have made the appropriation larger in the first instance.

Thank you very much for your statement. We have one more witness. I think we may be able to clean this up without coming back this afternoon, so I will call our next witness, Mr. Donald A. Jensen, executive officer of the California Motor Vehicle Pollution Control Board.

STATEMENT OF DONALD A. JENSEN, EXECUTIVE OFFICER, CALI.

FORNIA MOTOR VEHICLE POLLUTION CONTROL BOARD

Mr. JENSEN. Mr. Chairman and members of the subcommittee, in the interest of time, I will try to outline the prepared statement which has been given to you, and will summarize the high points of that state

(The prepared statement referred to follows:) STATEMENT OF DONALD A. JENSEN, EXECUTIVE OFFICER, CALIFORNIA MOTOR

VEHICLE POLLUTION CONTROL BOARD

ment.

INTRODUCTION

The State of California has had some challenging experiences in controlling crankcase and exhaust emissions from motor vehicles in the past 4 years. Many more challenges lie ahead in our State before the automobile is controlled as a source of air pollution. Speaking for the California Motor Vehicle Pollation Control Board, it is gratifying to be invited by your chairman to share with

[ocr errors]

11

you some of our progress in this most difficult field which requires every bit as
much initiative and leadership by legislative bodies as it does in the inventive
genius of engineers. I will comment specifically on four subjects which your
chairman named in his invitation; add an important fifth subject; and give a
brief summary of my general conclusions in respect to S. 306.
1. Establishment of standards and criteria for the allowable emissions from gaso-

line-powered vehicles (sec. 6 C (1), (2), (4), and D of proposed bill) Establishment of standards is an oversimplification of a difficult problem. Of the 86 million different vehicles in the United States, each presents, to some degree, a different control problem. Each is driven differently, maintained differently, and travels different routes. Each of these variables changes the emissions of a car. In addition, the varied mountain, desert, rural, and urban regions of the United States present many different conditions of auto operation.

Test procedures and criteria must be detailed to effectuate a standard such as the 275 parts per million mentioned in the legislation. These must be designed for the average, and be most specific.

Let me cite some examples. When standards were first adopted in California in 1959 and 1960, numerous nationally prominent firms publicly announced they had devices to meet those standards. When the standards were implemented by the California Motor Vehicle Pollution Control Board approved test procedures and criteria many of those firms quietly, or noisily, withdrew. They had interpreted standards to meet their particular device. If a control system worked well on a warmed-up vehicle, they measured results of their system against standards” on a hot engine and announced "success."

Some had systems which required frequent maintenance. A California cri. terion requiring at least a year without service eliminated other prominent contenders. Economic and engine performance requirements were also critical.

Finally, a new car complying with standards really means very little since cars on the roads are "used.” As a car becomes 5, 7, or 10 years old, it must still be in compliance to effectively reduce air pollution in our cities.

For approval of a crankcase device we require a control system to effectively control practically 100 percent of emissions on the worst 10 percent of all our California vehicles.

This leads to my recommendations on this subject:

1. "Standaris” should not be specified in the law. A regulatory agency should be given authority to establish standards, criteria, and test procedures since each is interrelated.

2. There should be "flexibility” so that inevitable new developments and improvements can be reflected in tighter regulations over vehicles. In California we have already tightened crankcase standards based primarily on engineering knowhow. We have adopted tighter exhaust emission standards effective in 1970. These reflected new data on emissions and looked farther into the future.

3. In our opinion, standards and other requirements should be “nationwide" rather than on a State-by-State basis in order to avoid chaos, enforcement problems, duplication, and high costs to the consumer. This would mean rural areas would have to be controlled as well as urban areas with the problem of polluted air. We are doing this now in California where approximately 20 percent of the population reside outside metropolitan areas. This has been difficult, but essential to meet the health needs of the majority.

There is one point in favor of flexibility and this could be explored. California has higher levels of measured auto-caused air polluiton than elsewhere. We already have a tighter standard adopted to be effective in 1970 because the proven need is here. The Federal Government may want to explore regional standards based on needs. The auto industry is already equipped for variations in regional production requirements so this could be workable and at least worthy of study. II. Establishment of standards and criteria for the allowable emissions from

diesel-powered vehicles (sec. 6C (3) and (4) of proposed bill) Scientific data shows that diesel emissions do not contribute materially to the area wide photochemical air pollution that blights our cities. It is a local nui. sance, and in California-á legislative headache. Individual motorists who have paid $5 to possibly $75 to control emissions from their autos are understandably irate when they get behind a smelly bus or a smoky truck,

Something had to be done. This necessity has led us in California to adopt standards for smoke from diesels and, at present, we are considering standards for odor.

The incentive for development of control devices in California came from a prospective mandatory competitive market which now totals 10 million vehicles. Diesels are only about one-half of 1 percent of that total in our State, and the same profit incentive to device manufacturers does not exist.

There are other problems which involve wide variations in diesel equipment (there is no mass assembly line of vehicles) and wide variation in uses. Controls for a diesel-powered urban bus would be different than an interstate bus or truck or a home-delivery vehicle.

Some progress has been made. Diesel engine manufacturers have voluntarily agreed to smoke limits on their new equipment. Work on better fuel and especially on maintenance of equipment is needed. My recommendations on this matter would be

1. In the absence of the incentive of a large competitive market, the Government must take a greater initiative in developing and enforcing controls.

2. Standards, criteria, and test procedures must be developed for national application, even though they are difficult and subjective. Requirements for reducing diesel smoke and odor are essential, or we may lose public support for the larger problem of controlling the gasoline-powered vehicles. In addition, diesels do cause local nuisance problems of smoke and odor.

3. Requirements permitting dilution of smoke and odor so it is not noticeable should be considered.

4. “Over the road” enforcement with citations by law enforcement officials against "excess smoke" will probably still be required after vehicles are equipped because improper maintenance, adjustments, and driving may nullify control devices. However, the basic control steps should be engine design or a device to prevent or reduce smoke and odor.

5. The possibility of legal control of fuel composition should be made per

missive in the law. III. Automotive research aspects (sec. 3A (5) of proposed bill)

The need for research on this general subject of control of auto emissions is very great. A completely sound scientific case can be made for "waiting for results of more research."

In California we have recognized this but have felt that we could not wait for 20 or 30 years for every fact to be established. We have proceeded on the very best information available from every possible source including private industry, universities, and government facilities. We would strongly recommend the same procedure to the Federal Government. Air pollution is critical enough in many places in this country to warrant an accelerated program. However we have not lost sight of the fact that there is some risk of waste and false starts if the basic knowledge lags too far behind the action program. Action in California bas brought forth a tremendous increase in know-how. Federal action would accelerate this search for knowledge.

I believe the greatest emphasis in research should be directed toward fuller understanding of the chemistry and impact on health of air pollution and the refinement of specifications for controls in the form of standards, test procedures, and other criteria.

The proposed bill specifically mentions the automotive research programs which should be accelerated.

My recommendations on this would be as follows: 1. The bill asks for accelerated research on evaporative losses. I'd suggest a broader subject with research on the importance of emitted hydrocarbon composition on the end effects of air pollution. For example, a pound of hydrocarbons evaporated from the fuel tank is probably less harmful than a pound of hydrocarbons from the tailpipe. Our present knowledge does not permit us to make this discrimination on a quantitative basis. This creates some doubts about the return on our investment in evaporation loss controls. 2. Accelerated research of oxides of nitrogen should immediately seek answers to three all-important questions:

First, what is the role of nitrogen oxides in the photochemical reaction? How much benefit can be expected for a given degree of control of these compounds? Second, if oxides of nitrogen being emitted from motor vehicles were controlled, would the remaining sources of oxides of nitrogen to the atmosphere from home and industrial sources still be sufficient to trigger photochemical air

pollution, and to what extent? Nonautomotive sources of oxides of nitrogen may account for as much as 50 percent of this contaminate.

Third, direct effect of low concentrations of oxides of nitrogen on health must be determined.

Answers to these questions can guide our emphasis on control of this emission from motor vehicles.

3. Accelerated research on aldehydes needs to be undertaken. Aldehydes can undergo photochemical reaction as to many hydrocarbons. Additional research is needed to more accurately establish the significance of these compounds. It is also important to learn if proposed exhaust control systems will convert some of the hydrocarbons to aldehydes. In addition to research on the significance of these compounds, it is important to develop reliable methods of measurement, both for concentrations found in the atmosphere and motor vehicle exhausts.

4. One final recommendation should be made in respect to a subject not now mentioned in the bill. We suggest a stepped up research program dealing with the performance of present exhaust and crankcase controls. This would be based on the experience in California. The results obtained in our State would be very valuable in deciding how and when to extend such control nationwide. The existence of large numbers of vehicles with crankcase and exhaust devices offers an excellent opportunity for a careful evaluation.

Control systems should be checked against information now available on reactivity of various hydrocarbons.

Public practice in maintenance of individual autos and its effect on longrange control of emissions should be evaluated.

Finally, we recommend investigation in methods which can be used to quickly and easily determine if a vehicle is in compliance with standards. IV. Federal Air Pollution Control Laboratory (sec. 3(d) of the proposed bill)

It is obvious that a well-equipped and well-staffed laboratory is essential to a sound air pollution control program. The Public Health Service at present has a laboratory that conducts research and studies in air pollution. I am not in a position to determine if the present facilities should be expanded or if a new laboratory be established.

I can say that our State air-pollution laboratory in California is well equipped and well staffed. Rather than duplicating facilities, the Federal Government may wish to bolster this effort. Under present rules, we fail to qualify for matching funds because our expenditures were at a high level for some years before passage of the Federal Clean Air Act. V. Inspection and maintenance of the devices (sec. 6(e) of the proposed bill)

Although the committee chairman did not specifically request comment on this phase of the bill, I must do so because is so critical. A car with exhaust hydrocarbon emissions of 275 parts per million at time of initial sale can be at 500 parts per million within a year, and even more, if not maintained. The one auto company's exhaust control system now approved by California has annual maintenance as a basic part of its certified "device." That maintenance is a specified 342-hour sophisticated tuneup by trained mechanics. Other car companies have not yet specified their required maintenance, but they are already mounting extensive training programs for mechanics and auto service personnel.

The crankcase device installation program in California has shown at least a fourth of our so-called auto mechanics are unable to install a device according to instructions. It also showed after the first 2 years that only 18 percent of the valves on devices were being maintained as recommended.

Recognizing these problems, our California Legislature is now in the process of rewriting enforcement provisions of our auto smog law to prepare for man; datory annual inspections and servicing of exhaust and crankcase control systems.

While this is not discouraging us, it is a fact that must be faced; and it is one of the more difficult challenges that we are now facing in California. A major revolution in car maintenance may well be in the offing as a result of the necessity to insure that the emissions from motor vehicles remain within standards.

Unfortunately, the auto manufacturers and ourselves both have limited in. formation on this subject. Testing an equipped vehicle over a short period of time on a proving ground hardly gives accurate data on the many factors that

could affect emission levels as vehicles are subjected to millions of variations in car owner maintenance habits over a period of many years.

Our fleet tests with cars subjected to fleet maintenance procedures in central company-owned service facilities also are not indicative of cars driven by the public.

My recommendation on this matter then would be to leave the bill in its present general terms in respect to this question, then work carefully with California and with the auto manufacturers service industry to get sound, accurate information as to requirements of maintenance as exhaust controls go on approximately 850,000 new 1966 models in our State.

CONCLUSION

Speaking for the motor vehicle pollution control board, we endorse S. 306 as an important forward step toward obtaining clean air in our cities and ridding our atmosphere of aerial sewage. The recommendations and suggestions in this statement today do not detract from support of the basic provisions in this measure. There are a few general comments that should be made within the framework of this endorsement.

I cannot stress too much that this is an extremely complicated and difficult problem. Some scientists have characterized it as being at least as difficult as our effort to reach the moon. We must agree. For that reason, I strongly recommend you maintain flexibility in the law so adjustments can be made based on new developments.

For example, the bill requires exhaust controls on foreign vehicles imported to the United States and on larger gasoline-powered trucks, motorcycles, and other vehicles. To date it appears that it will be difficult to have exhaust control systems that meet California standards on foreign cars, motorcycles, or large trucks. Our State legislature gave our board flexibility on these requirements and some leadtime to permit engineering solutions.

I would even suggest sufficient flexibility to permit mandatory installation of exhaust controls on used vehicles in the event effective economical control systems become available. The delay in waiting for attrition of all the used Fehicles now on the road may not be tolerable when weighed against the health needs of our populace.

I would again like to urge that the millions of vehicles in California be used to serve as an effective workshop to prove out effective national legislation.

There is also general observation that I would like to make in respect to private industry. It is my experience that it is the all-important partner in this effort to control emissions from motor vehicles.

Our board from the outset recognized that this was a complicated task which required the best brains available in this country and abroad. We have literally hundreds of people on our technical advisory groups to cover all aspects of this needed knowledge.

We have never taken a major move without the benefit of counsel of these technical advisory groups which are heavily weighted with technical people from private industry. Some of these industries have actually loaned engineers and chemists to us to work with our staff.

Admittedly, we as a government agency protecting the public cannot accept all their advice. I know of no board decision which received complete and total acceptance from private industry; nevertheless I am saying that success in California must be credited in large part to the efforts of private enterprise. Gov. ernment agencies can only outline the health need and the framework for action, not the practical solutions. This means, for example, that requirements must be stated as performance criteria, not as specific hardware.

I emphasize this point to support the philosophy of the Clean Air Act and S. 306 which calls for industry advice and participation through committees. California experience would point up the need for that philosophy of partnership. We as a State government agency have not developed one single control device for one single vehicle. Private industry did the work, and our job was to tell them what we wanted in terms that their scientific people could understand and that could be objectively tested.

Finally, as we talk of partnerships in this endeavor, I must give recognition to the cooperation we have received from the U.S. Public Health Service and other Federal agencies. Our pioneer effort in California has been challenging, but essential. With 10 million cars on our roads today, and 19 million esti

« PreviousContinue »