The Ontario Trucking Association says it is pleased the Ford Government was listening to the trucking industry as it drafted its Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan.
In the plan, announced today by Rod Phillips, Minister of Environment, Conservation and Parks, the Ontario Government outlined opportunities to reduce emissions from the trucking sector while increasing enforcement on some in the industry that attempt to avoid compliance with environmental equipment rules and standards.
A major plank of the new plan is the Ontario Carbon Trust, to which the Ontario government will commit some $400 million over four years, to work with the private sector on developing clean technologies to reduce emissions.
Action plan items that specifically affect trucking are:
- Redesigning the emissions testing program for heavy-duty trucks and strengthening on-road enforcement of emissions standards;
- Supporting improvements to existing winter roads and replacing them where they are deteriorating and enhancing all season road connections to Northern Ontario;
- Encouraging the adoption of low carbon fuel technologies, primarily in electric vehicles but also the expansion of compressed natural gas (CNG) in the trucking sector;
- Working with the private sector to remove barriers to expanding 24/7 CNG stations for trucks along the 400 series highways;
- Committing to parallel the changes made at the Federal level regarding CCA rates, which will allow investments in clean energy and conservation equipment more attractive
“OTA looks forward to working with the Government of Ontario to level the playing field for the majority of law-abiding carriers by developing a green commercial vehicle enforcement action plan that targets a small segment of our sector engaged in emission control tampering and speed governing non-compliance,” says OTA chair David Carruth. “This plan will reduce red tape in our sector, making Ontario’s trucking industry more competitive, while ensuring the rules and regulations meant to eliminate pollution and harmful emissions in the province are respected by everyone in our sector. Combining this enforcement approach with the trucking industry’s pursuit and significant current invest commitment in green technologies and fuels will further reduce the Ontario trucking industry’s environmental footprint.”
The government stated today this plan will be reviewed every four years and an advisory panel will oversee its implementation.
“OTA is looking forward to developing clear and achievable action items outlined in the Made-in-Ontario Environmental Plan, many of which were outlined by OTA in our recent Drive Clean Review submission,” said OTA president Stephen Laskowski.