Attorney General Bonta Submits Comment Letter on EPA's Proposed Greenhouse Gas Standards for Heavy-Duty Vehicles

Monday, June 19, 2023
Contact: (916) 210-6000,

OAKLAND — California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced today that he led a coalition of attorneys general and cities in submitting a comment letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regarding its proposed greenhouse gas standards (GHG) for heavy-duty vehicles. If finalized, EPA's proposal would strengthen GHG standards for model year 2027 heavy-duty vehicles and establish GHG standards for model years 2028 through 2032. Heavy-duty vehicles include garbage collection trucks, delivery trucks, public utility trucks, tractors, and school buses. In their letter, the attorneys general and cities express their support for EPA's proposal, and urge it to move forward with more stringent standards, which technological advancements make feasible nationwide.
"We congratulate EPA for proposing heavy-duty standards for these model years, but urge the agency to finalize stronger standards,” said Attorney General Bonta. “The technology exists to ensure that new heavy-duty trucks emit less pollution as they make their way through our streets and freeways. We simply cannot afford to wait: Climate change demands bold action from us all. And we cannot ignore an important reality: Lower income communities and communities of color are more likely to live, work, or go to school in or near areas with high heavy-duty vehicle activity, which poses serious health risks. I thank my fellow attorneys general, as well as the cities of Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York, for standing together on this important issue."
The transportation sector is the largest source of GHG emissions in the United States, with heavy-duty vehicles being the second-largest contributor within that sector. The well-documented buildup of GHG emissions has contributed to, and continues to contribute to, climate change. In addition, heavy-duty vehicles are a significant source of non-GHG pollutants that detrimentally affect air quality. Both the impacts of climate change and poor air quality disproportionately harm environmental justice communities.
In their letter, the attorneys general and cities:

  • Urge EPA to finalize rigorous but feasible standards — standards that could produce levels of technological deployment and public protection equivalent to California’s Advanced Clean Trucks Rule, which requires zero-emission vehicles to comprise increasing percentages of the heavy-duty vehicles sold in California; 
  • Urge EPA to finalize increasingly stringent standards through model years 2033 to 2035, and to continue to support technological advancement and deployment on par with the Advanced Clean Trucks Rule when doing so; and 
  • Underscore the importance of protecting public health. For example, they note that poor air quality can result in higher rates of asthma, cardiovascular disease, and low birth weights. 

Attorney General Bonta is joined by the attorneys general of Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, and Wisconsin; the People of the State of Michigan; the Commonwealths of Massachusetts and Pennsylvania; and the Cities of Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York.
A copy of the comment letter is available here.

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