State of California
AIR RESOURCES BOARD
Summary of Board Meeting
March 28-29, 1996
Air Resources Board
Board Hearing Room, Lower Level
2020 "L Street
MEMBERS PRESENT: Hons. John D. Dunlap, III, Chairman
Eugene A. Boston, M.D.
Joseph C. Calhoun, P.E.
Lynne T. Edgerton, Esq.
M. Patricia Hilligoss
John S. Lagarias, P.E.
Jack C. Parnell
James W. Silva
Doug Vagim (March 29 only)
|AGENDA ITEM #
Public Meeting to Update the Board on the Status of the California Cleaner Burning Gasoline (CARFG) Regulation Implementation Efforts
SUMMARY OF AGENDA ITEM:
This was the fifth report to the Board on the status of California's cleaner-burning gasoline program implementation efforts. Status reports were also provided in June 1994, and February, September, and December, 1995.
This was the first status report to the Board after the March 1, 1996, compliance date for refiners. The Board was briefed on the three major implementation efforts by the cleaner-burning gasoline Advisory Committee and the three subcommittees on performance, supply, and public education and ARB and California Energy Commission (CEC) staff.
The Performance Subcommittee has released its report evaluating the performance and compatibility of cleaner-burning gasoline with gasoline-powered on-road and off-road vehicles, engines, and equipment. In the report, the Performance Subcommittee found no problems associated with the use of cleaner-burning gasoline and that cleaner-burning gasoline performs as well as current gasolines.
Staff informed the Board that in many areas of the State, cleaner-burning gasoline is available to the public. To date, no performance problems have been found to be directly attributable to the use of cleaner-burning gasoline by the general public. Staff will continue to monitor the State closely for any potential performance problems in the field.
All of the major refiners met the March 1, 1996 compliance date to produce and ship cleaner-burning gasoline. About 35 million gallons of cleaner-burning gasoline are being produced and shipped daily. Inventories are at or above historic levels. Refiners are almost universally taking advantage of the flexibility authorized in the regulations to produce cleaner-burning gasoline.
Since the middle of February 1996, average retail prices in California have increased about 10 cents per gallon. However, during this time, crude oil prices have also increased about seven cents per gallon. Nationally, prices have also gone up by a similar amount due to crude price and seasonal swings. It appears that most of the recent price increase is attributable to factors other than California's requirement for cleaner-burning gasoline.
The outreach program has been very effective in providing information on cleaner-burning gasoline to the general public. Virtually every legislator or their staff has been briefed. In addition, editorial boards of the State's major papers have been briefed and have expressed near universal support for the program. Briefing materials have been sent to the State's newspapers and television and radio stations, and over 200 briefings have been conducted with key organizations. Over 1,500 calls have been received on the Air Resources Board toll-free information line since November 1, 1995. In early April, staff will distribute information to over 50,000 auto technicians in California. The outreach program will continue with its ongoing efforts and be adjusted to meet program needs as necessary.
In summary, the transition to cleaner-burning gasoline is proceeding smoothly with no performance problems. Supply is adequate to meet anticipated demand, and price is within the expected range.
ORAL TESTIMONY: None
FORMAL BOARD ACTION: None
RESPONSIBLE DIVISION: SSD
STAFF REPORT: No
|96-2-2||Public Hearing to Consider Amendments to the Zero-Emission
Vehicle Requirements for Passenger Cars and Light-Duty Trucks
SUMMARY OF AGENDA ITEM:
At the public meeting held December 14, 1995 and continued to December 21, 1995, the staff presented to the Board three main concepts that had emerged for modifying the existing Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) program. The staff recommended the concept that would suspend the ZEV requirements for the 1998 through 2002 model years and create a technology development partnership to foster continued ZEV-related research and development consistent with the findings of the Battery Technology Advisory Panel. In response, the Board directed the staff to begin the regulatory process to modify the ZEV program consistent with the staff recommendations.
At this Board hearing, the staff proposed regulatory amendments that would eliminate the 1998 through 2002 model year ZEV requirements and provide additional credits for the introduction of ZEVs prior to 2003. The multiple ZEV credits would be provided for vehicles that have greater range or use advanced batteries.
The staff also proposed that the Board enter into separate Memoranda of Agreements (MOAs) with each of the seven automakers subject to the 1998 ZEV requirement. Under the MOAs, the automakers would commit to certify, produce, and sell nationwide cleaner light-duty vehicles beginning in the 2001 model year. The MOAs would further commit the signatory automakers to continue ZEV-related research and development, participate in ZEV demonstration programs beginning in 1998, and introduce ZEVs based on market demand.
Major stakeholders who presented comments to the Board on March 28 included automakers, representatives of legislators, the oil industry, environmental groups, California businesses, electric utilities, research groups, and citizens. The proposal was supported by automakers and auto dealers and opposed by legislative and oil industry representatives due to the 2003 percentage requirement. In general, environmental advocacy groups were concerned about the modifications, due to a perceived weakness in enforceability and potential loss of air quality benefits, but expressed a desire to move forward together on implementation issues. Battery developers were generally supportive, provided California's policy signals on proceeding with ZEV implementation remain strong. The Advanced Lead Acid Battery Consortium (ALABC) proposed a new measure of battery performance which considers cost and cycle life.
The Board committed to establishing an implementation committee consisting of representatives of the Board, the public, and the affected industries to continue monitoring the status of the ZEV program. The committee and ARB staff will provide annual reports to the Board on the status of ZEV development and supporting infrastructure. Staff was directed to use ALABC's battery performance measure in future reports. Staff was also charged with tracking fuel cell progress.
Valory Brown Assemblyman Steve Baldwin
John Grimley Senator Ray Haynes
John Schutz Nissan Motor Limited
Jerome F. Cole Advanced Lead-Acid Battery Consortium
Janet Hathaway Natural Resources Defense Council
Andrew A. Frank University of California, Davis
Cecile Martin Cal/Electric Transportation Coalition
Eric Ridenour Chrysler Corporation
Judy Mikels So. Cal. Association of Governments
Lloyd Dixon RAND
Tim Carmichael Coalition for Clean Air
Dave Hermance Toyota
Joe Caves Union of Concerned Scientists
Marc Chytilo Environmental Defense Center/CalPIRG
Stephen Heckeroth Mendo Motive
Doug Henderson Western States Petroleum Association
Dr. Larry L. Berg Ballard Power Systems
Ben Knight Honda
Jamie Phillips Planning and Conservation League
Ed Maschke CALPIRG
Tohru Aihara Mazda
Paul Haluza MEMA
Daki Venetolis Citizen
Charles Hooper Citizen
Pam Leeper Project California
Mark Stout Citizen
Barbara George Peoples Energy Matters
Richard E. Wilmshurst Forty-Niner Sierra Resources, Inc.
Anita Mangels Californians Against Hidden Taxes
Samuel A. Leonard