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California Trucking Association Sues Due to CARB Rule

The California Trucking Association has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to block enforcement of the California Air Resources Board’s Advanced Clean Fleets regulation.

This regulation would make it so that motor carriers operating in California would have to transition their fleets to zero-emission vehicles beginning as soon as next year.

The lawsuit asks the federal court to give them a preliminary and permanent injunction to stop them from implementing or enforcing the regulation.

In a note to its members, CTA CEO Eric Sauer said the lawsuit is aimed at federal law violations, including ongoing issues with the Federal Clean Air Act and the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994.

“Litigation was not our desired path concerning the industry’s transition to zero emissions, but conflict was inevitable once it became clear that CARB embraced a make-believe view of what could be accomplished with today’s technology and infrastructure,” CTA said. “In doing so, the agency violated multiple state and federal laws and, accordingly, these issues will be brought before the courts by CTA and multiple other entities.”

The ACF rule is aimed at reducing emissions and improving air quality in California. It comprises four principal regulatory provisions: regulations designed to phase in zero-emission vehicles to fleets for state and local governments, regulations designed to phase in zero-emission vehicles for high-priority fleets, regulations designed to phase them in for drayage fleets, and a 100% zero-emission vehicle sales mandate effective in 2036. 

“Because the ACF regulation is aimed at transforming not only the vehicles sold within California’s borders, but virtually any vehicle that enters those borders, CARB has disregarded what the United States Supreme Court has declared to be Congress’s carefully calibrated regulatory scheme,” the lawsuit said.

“Since 2020, our nation has realized the essential role that the logistics industry plays in supplying the lifeblood of our nation’s economy and that this industry becomes pressured in the face of uncertainty,” the lawsuit said. 

“Instead of providing an assurance of clear and compliant regulations, the California Air Resources Board has promulgated the Advanced Clean Fleets regulation, which expands California’s regulatory authority well beyond its borders and establishes such untenable mandates that CARB itself has already been compelled to informally promise certain provisions will not be enforced.”

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