Car-pollution Rules May Stall

Zero-emission standard could wait till '05

Published: 11-Jan-2003

ONG>By Don Thompson
Associated Press

California would delay until 2005 requirements for new zero-emission vehicles such as fuel cell and hybrid vehicles that were supposed to be adopted this year, if state regulators adopt revised rules recommended Friday.

The California Air Resources Board's staff reworded the state's proposed mandates to comply with two adverse court rulings last year but said the regulations keep pushing manufacturers to develop a new generation of low-pollution vehicles while reducing the industry's cost.

Critics, however, said the proposed regulations would let major manufacturers avoid putting any additional zero-emission vehicles on the road at least through 2009 by relying instead on "credits" for existing low-pollution vehicles.

"We need to get rid of some of these phony credits they've built up," said the Sierra Club's V. John White.

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