The disconnect between California policies and politics are at such odds with the rest of the country, it’s a wonder the other 49 states haven’t excommunicated the Golden State from the union.
Todays’ headlines are the perfect example:
- Rail strike potential grows, threatening to worsen supply chain backlogs, inflation
- California Looks to Ban Diesel Trucks at Ports by 2035
California’s Long Beach and Los Angeles ports process approximately 40 percent of container shipments coming through the U.S.
Does anyone in charge California care?
As the country’s supply chain backlogs still exist and continues to plague many industries, California’s nonsensical diesel regulatory rules threaten to worsen the supply chain – on top of a potential rail strike which could grind supplies throughout the country to a halt.
It’s as if the international bad guy Dr. Evil is trying to destroy America’s economy.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom is obviously aware of the problem. In October, he announced he was committing $1.2 billion to support the state’s ports and freight corridors – although he claimed the backlog was “pandemic-induced.”
“Seventy percent of the program funding will go to projects that support goods movement through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach,” Newsom’s announcement said.
Good. The Long Beach port was already a problem.
But Newsom is ignoring his own California Air Resources Board’s ongoing economy-restricting policies by doubling down in blatant policies opposed to business interests, particularly those of large-scale corporations. “The goal is to push more than 30,000 heavily-polluting trucks to clean energy by 2035,” the Wall Street Journal reported.
California’s diesel regulations were created during the last administration under then-Governor Jerry Brown. Immediately upon enactment by the CARB, and installation by truck owners, the mandatory, faulty diesel particulate filters were exploding all across the state. Ironically, the filters even fail(ed) at cleaning the air.
The Alliance for California Business, a voluntary group whose purpose is to protect and promote business interests throughout California, told me in 2016 that Diesel Particulate Filters started more than 31 fires in just two years, including several in areas of the state parched by the drought. The Diesel Particulate Filters are the result of environmental regulations created by the California Air Resources Board, and were based on a deeply flawed study led by a CARB researcher accused of faking his Ph.D. credential. The CARB was not only aware of employee Hien Tran and his phony Ph.D. credentials and flawed research, yet the agency instead rushed head-on to meet its self-imposed schedule in creating the diesel regulations on truckers using the faulty science.
California’s owners/operators of trucks, small business owners, and farmers and ranchers, whose livelihood is tied to having affordable, safe, and reliable trucks for transporting goods, were targeted by the California Air Resources Board, and required to install Diesel Particulate Filters in all commercial trucks.
And when CARB made this regulation, it kicked thousands of independent truckers out of this business. Many large and small truckers could not afford to retrofit their trucks and fleets and were forced out of business. The truckers still in business had to spend $20,000 to $50,000 per truck retrofit with the CARB’s expensive, mandated Diesel Particulate Filter, or they had to buy newer model trucks to meet the new regulations. New trucks are hugely expensive.
Many of those truckers and trucking companies who could afford the retrofit or new trucks reported exploding trucks thanks to the CARB’s ‘Truck and Bus Regulations’ to control emissions from diesel engines.
The Diesel Particulate Filter devices were hailed by CARB, in countless public statements and Executive Orders, as an inexpensive, easy to install, device that could be implemented on all diesel powered engines throughout the State of California within just a few years. The CARB claimed the use of the filters would thereby improve air quality in the Los Angeles and San Joaquin basins.
Nothing could have been further from the truth.
It took some time, but CARB finally publicly acknowledged (barely) that the Diesel Particulate Filter is expensive to install and maintain, mechanically unreliable, and the warranties were inadequate both as to time, mileage and scope of coverage.
But even worse, the Diesel Particulate Filter clogged, causing engine fires. These engine fires erupt, and have caused numerous very serious and even deadly accidents, as well as devastating property damage.
The CARB’s solution was to double down on stupid and imposed a ban on diesel trucks, forcing more and more California truckers out of business.
As the state attempts to wean (force) drivers off gas and diesel-powered vehicles, pushing commercial fleets of vans, long-haul trucks and buses to transition to zero-emission vehicles, “the trucks tend to cost two or three times as much as diesel trucks, which retail for about $150,000. Most electric trucks today have a range of between 100 and 200 miles between charges, making longer trucking routes impractical,” WSJ reported.
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