Mexico launches new world-class heavy-duty vehicle emissions standards

Mexico stands to become the first middle-income country in the world to adopt and implement world-class, filter-based standards for heavy-duty vehicles.

Mexico, one of the founders and leaders of the Climate and Clean Air Coalition, stands to become the first middle-income country in the world to adopt and implement world-class, filter-based standards for heavy-duty vehicles. The achievement is a great success of the CCAC’s Heavy-Duty Diesel (HDD) Initiative, which aims to catalyse major reductions in black carbon through the adoption of clean fuel and vehicle regulations and supporting policies worldwide.

On December 1, 2014, the regulatory committee of Mexico’s Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT) voted to adopt a proposal that will virtually eliminate fine particle an black carbon emissions from diesel trucks and align Mexico’s heavy-duty vehicle emissions standards with current standards in the United States and the European Union. During the preparation of the proposal, the support of CCAC partners in the HDD Initiative was invaluable, exemplifying the principles underlying the CCAC.

The US, Canada, the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), and UNEP, co-leads of the Heavy-Duty Diesel Initiative, developed the work plan to help support this effort. The ICCT provided technical training for key staff members and agency partners, modelling and analysis of costs and benefits, and timely insights into regulatory language and other technical questions. In addition, the US EPA assisted with input into important and technical issues related to the proposal.

Heavy-duty diesel engines are one of the most important sources of black carbon and other harmful emissions, and one that we have proven, well-understood strategies for cleaning up. We need other growing markets to put these kinds of world-class emissions standards in place.” Drew Kodjak, Executive Director of the ICCT

The proposed modification of NOM-044-SEMARNAT-20061, establishes maximum permissible emissions limits of total hydrocarbons, non-methane hydrocarbons, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, and particles from the tailpipe of new motors that use diesel fuel and that are used in new vehicles, as well as new complete vehicles that are equipped with these motors.

“The Heavy-Duty Diesel Initiative of CCAC assists regions and countries in developing vehicle emissions and fuel quality standards, promoting emission technologies and developing national roadmaps for cleaner fuel and vehicles. Mexico is the first country that has adopted a proposal that will virtually eliminate the fine particle and black carbon emissions from diesel trucks supported by this Initiative. I congratulate Mexico for the leadership demonstrated and look forward to other countries benefitting from this experience”, said Helena Molin Valdes, Head of the CCAC Secretariat.

These world-class standards will bring significant air quality, health, and climate benefits, and multiple co-benefits for industry and consumers. The new standards would require new heavy-duty diesel vehicles sold after 1 January 2018 to be equipped with diesel particulate filters (DPFs), advanced NOX aftertreatment, full on-board diagnostic (OBD) systems, and failsafes which ensure correct operation of emissions control systems.

In addition to supporting countries in their national programs and policies on emissions reduction in the HDD sector, the CCAC through the HDDI is also developing a global fuel sulfur strategy to address barriers to the adoption of low sulfur fuels, and leading the Global Green Freight Call Action Plan to improve the energy efficiency and environmental performance of freight operations worldwide.

Download the ICCT press release in English and Spanish.

For details on the proposal, download the ICCT policy update in English and Spanish.

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