California seeks to ban sales of diesel big rigs in a bold bid to cut pollution blamed for asthma and cancer.
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is making a final push to cut air pollution blamed for a rise in asthma and cancer.
According to CNN, California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has been pressing federal regulators to make big vehicles exempt from the vehicle emission standards that have helped clean up the air since California implemented its ban on conventional gasoline use.
“We know that trucks are the most polluting vehicle on the road,” Schwarzenegger said in an interview with CNN from Sacramento, just outside the state capital. “And it’s not good for public health.”
He cited the example of asthma. “If there are only vehicles that meet the standard, the people with lower emissions suffer not only from asthma, but also from higher cancer rates, so we have to get rid of the trucks in California.”
The governor is also trying to cut emissions by switching off the nation’s most polluting gasoline engines. He’ll ask the Obama administration last week for $200 million to subsidize electric cars, and is trying to convince European automakers to move their fleets to greener forms of propulsion, or at least phase out diesel and other harmful vehicles.
California’s proposal has been met with resistance. The Federal Trade Commission has already expressed concern over the governor’s proposal for a national fuel-rationing program. The EPA and California’s Air Resources Board have their own programs in the works.
The president of the National Association of State Alcohol and Drug Abuse Directors, Tim Quinn, told CNN he disagreed with the governor’s plan, saying, “It’s a good start. But it doesn’t get us very far because the problem here isn’t with the cars, it’s with the people who drive the cars.”
The governor has also called on U.S. automakers to adopt more fuel-efficient cars and trucks, including the Toyota Prius and the Honda Insight. He said automakers have ignored the