Recreational Marine Engine Activities

This page last reviewed January 16, 2014

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ARB's recreational marine engine program is an important new element in ARB's efforts to improve air quality through reductions of hydrocarbon (HC) and oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions. Regulations have been adopted for certain marine vessels and regulations have been proposed for other spark-ignition engines used in boats for propulsion. Commercial marine engines are covered under the Commercial Marine Vessel webpage. Spark-ignition auxiliary marine engines (power generators, winches, or auxiliary propulsion engines for sail boats) are defined as small off-road spark-ignition engines (below 25 horsepower) or large off-road spark-ignition engines (25 horsepower and greater) depending on their size. Compression-ignition auxiliary and propulsion marine engines under 50 horsepower are defined as off-road diesel (compression-ignition) engines.

What's New


Posted January 16, 2014:

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Marine Outboard Catalyst Research Project

In June 2011, ARB contracted with Mercury Marine to demonstrate the feasibilty of equipping small outboard marine engines with catalytic converters, and to evaluate their emissions performance and durability. Mercury Marine developed, and comprehensively tested several catalyst-equipped prototype engines ranging from 6 hp to 40 hp over a period of 350 hours in a real-world, salt-water environment. Mercury Marine also evaluated the extended durability of two larger outboard engines (i.e., 200 hp) equipped with catalytic converters, which had previously been developed and evaluated in ARB's Innovative Clean Air Technologies project (final report available here: ICAT # 06-01). The results of both of these demonstration projects are expected to provide guidance for the adoption of future outboard marine exhaust emission standards in California. A final report of the completed research for the second-phase demonstration project (ARB Contract #10-629) is available here: Final Report.      

Posted September 23, 2013:

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ARB staff presented an update to the Spark-Ignition Marine Vessel (SIMV) evaporative proposal at the 2013 International Boatbuilder Exhibition and Conference on Septemeber 18, 2013. You can view the presentation here: 2013 IBEX Presentation

Posted November 30, 2012:

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The final Spark-Ignition Marine Engine amendments, which were adopted by the Air Resources Board on December 16, 2011, were filed with the California Office of Administrative Law (OAL) on October 26, 2012. OAL has until December 12, 2012, to render a decision. On March 22, 2012, a Notice of Public Availability of Modified Text was posted and made available for a fifteen-day public comment period. On November 15, 2011, a Notice of Change in the Public Hearing Date was posted, which rescheduled the date of the hearing from December 15, 2011, to December 16, 2011. On November 4, 2011, an Errata was posted to provide minor corrections to the staff report that had been posted October 26, 2011. The applicable regulatory documents for the above indicated actions can be found at the following link:  Board Hearing Regulatory Materials

Posted October 28, 2011:

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On December 15, 2011, the Air Resources Board will consider proposed amendments to the California regulations and test procedures for SORE/LSI/OHRV/Off-Road CI/Rec Marine.  Specifically, the discussion will focus on test procedures for SORE and Tier 4 Off-Road CI, and the exhaust emission test fuel for off-road SI engines, equipment, and vehicles. The meeting notice, staff report, and all other regulatory documents can be found at the following link:  Board Hearing Regulatory Materials

Posted May 19 2010:

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Posted May 12, 2010:

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The draft regulation to control evaporative emissions from Spark-Ignition Marine Vessels is now available for download and viewing: Draft Marine SI Regulation

Posted April 28, 2010:

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A public workshop to discuss a proposal to regulate evaporative emissions from Spark-Ignition Marine Vessels will be held today in El Monte. The presentations for today's workshop are available for downloading and viewing: Evaporative Proposal Presentation and Certification Presentation.

Posted April 7, 2010:

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A public workshop to discuss a proposal to regulate evaporative emissions from Spark-Ignition Marine Vessels will be held on April 28, 2010 in El Monte. The workshop notice and agenda can be found here: Notice and Agenda. A summary of the proposed regulation can be found here: Regulation Summary.

Posted March 3, 2010:

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Staff met with the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and stakeholders to discuss updated changes to the draft proposal. The presentation by ARB staff is available for download and viewing.
Stakeholder Meeting - Update Presentation

Posted September 28, 2009:

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The Air Resources Board (ARB) is currently seeking an estimate of the increased manufacturing cost for proposed ARB controls from marine vessel and personal watercraft manufacturers. The request letters and cost surveys are available below for download and viewing.
Personal Watercraft Manufacturer Cost Survey
Marine Vessel Manufacturer Cost Survey

Posted August 28, 2009:

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Draft test procedure to determine ORVR efficiency from Pleasure Craft.
Draft Pleasure Craft ORVR test procedure

Posted Feburary 25, 2009:

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The presentation for today's workshop is available for download and viewing.
Pleasure Craft Draft Proposal Presentation


Posted Feburary 5, 2009:

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A Public Workshop for the Pleasure Craft evaporative emissions proposal will be held on February 25, 2009 in Sacramento. Please see below to view the notice and draft regulation. The presentation will be available at the time of the workshop.
Draft Proposal.
Workshop Notice.
Agenda.
Directions.

Posted August 6, 2008:

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Public Hearing Presentation and staff's suggested modifications to the original proposal as distributed at the July 24, 2008 Board Hearing are posted below.
Presentation.
Staff's Suggested Modifications.

Posted July 8, 2008:

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Public Hearing Notice and related material is now posted. Please see below to view all related documents.
Recreational Marine 2008 Regulatory Documents.


Posted March 18, 2008:

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A Public Workshop for the spark-ignition marine engine regulation will be held on March 18, 2008 in El Monte.  Please see below to view the notice and presentation.
Workshop Notice.
Presentation. (Revised March 24, 2008)

Posted June 27, 2007:

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A Public Workshop for the Pleasure Craft regulation was held on June 27, 2007 in Sacramento. The presentation can be viewed at (PDF - 195K)

Posted June 20, 2007:

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Teleconference information for the upcoming test plan workshop can be found here (PDF - 2K)
Staff is making available the latest version of the proposed test plan for Pleasure Craft. This version will supersede the previous version listed below. You can find the latest version here. (PDF - 489K)

Posted June 1, 2007:

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Staff will be holding a workshop to discuss the test plan for the Pleasure Craft regulation on June 27, 2007 in Sacramento. The Notice of the Public Workshop is available here (PDF - 25K). The agenda for the workshop is available here (PDF - 3K).

Posted May 18, 2007:

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The Draft Test Plan for the Pleasure Craft regulation is available here (PDF-489K).


Posted April 14, 2006:

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Automotive Testing Laboratories, Inc. (ATL) performed evaporative emissions testing on marine pleasure craft at the request of the Air Resources Board. The ATL final report can be viewed at (ATL Final Report).

Posted April 11, 2006:

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A Public Workshop for the pleasure craft regulation will be held on April 12, 2006 in Sacramento. The presentation can be viewed at (PDF - 85K).

Posted March 20, 2006:

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The Air Resources Board (ARB) is studying the evaporative emissions released by pleasure craft fuel systems for rulemaking consideration. A workshop to discuss the topic will be held on April 12, 2006. For more details about the workshop please go here. Click here for an agenda and directions.



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