Commercial Vehicle Emissions – Phase 2

With Earth Day right around the corner, we thought this was a good time to update those in the transportation industry on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) latest initiative, Phase 2 Heavy-Duty National Program.


Phase 1

In 2011, the Administration finalized fuel economy standards for Model Year 2014 – 2018 heavy-duty vehicles. It was projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by about 270 million metric tons and save 530 million barrels of oil.

Climate Action Plan Overview

The Climate Action plan was announced in June 2013. President Obama directed the EPA and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to set the next round of standards. These standards were to further reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improve fuel efficiency for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles and engines. This next round of standards has come to be known as Phase 2.

Phase 2

Phase 2 Heavy-Duty National Program is meant to reduce GHG emissions and fuel consumption for new on-road heavy-duty vehicles. The program is meant to advance technology, and would phase in over the long-term; beginning in the 2018 Model Year and culminating in standards for Model Year 2027.

The Phase 2 program would build on and advance the model years 2014 – 2018 Phase 1 program in a number of ways, including:

  • Basing standards not only on currently available technologies, but also on utilization of technologies now under development;
  • Developing standards for trailers;
  • Further encouraging innovation and providing flexibility;
  • Including vehicles produced by small business manufacturers;
  • Incorporating enhanced test procedures that allow individual drivetrain and powertrain performance to be reflected in the vehicle certification process; and,
  • Using an expanded and improved compliance simulation model.

The NHTSA’s published ruling on Phase 2 can be found here.

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