Leyva Bill Requiring Smog Checks for Big Rig Trucks Passes Assembly Natural Resources Committee

SB 210 “is a real win-win for Californians and the air we breathe”

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

SACRAMENTO – Legislation authored by Senator Connie M. Leyva (D-Chino) that will establish ‘smog check’ requirements for heavy-duty diesel trucks in California passed from the Assembly Natural Resources Committee.  Unlike how personal passenger vehicles have done for decades, current law does not require heavy-duty trucks to undergo regular smog checks.

SB 210 will assist in the removal of approximately 1,600 tons of harmful particulate matter—equivalent to taking 375,000 trucks off the roads in the state—over the next decade.  Approximately one million heavy-duty trucks drive on California roads annually and are major contributors to the state’s poor air quality conditions.

“Particularly in a state where we have made great efforts and strides to clean our air, it is critical that big diesel trucks undergo smog check testing, just as our own passenger vehicles already do,” Senator Leyva said.  “SB 210  is the next critical step to help reduce air pollution from these trucks that travel on the roads and highways across California.  With this legislation, we have a unique opportunity to ensure long lasting air quality improvements and increase the competitiveness of the California trucking industry.  I thank my colleagues on both sides of the aisle that have supported SB 210 and understand that this legislation is a real win-win for Californians and the air we breathe.”

By modernizing and properly maintaining their fleets, many California based truck owners and operators strive to meet our nation-leading air quality standards. Unfortunately, these operators can be at a competitive disadvantage with non-compliant vehicles, including many out-of-state trucks. 

California has some of the worst air quality in the nation, including areas such as the Central Valley and the Inland Empire—which serves as the primary route for transporting goods from the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles to the rest of the country.  Heavy-duty trucks operating in California today account for nearly 60 percent of the harmful nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions from mobile sources and are the largest source of diesel particulate matter (PM 2.5), a carcinogenic and toxic air contaminant. Approximately 12 million residents across California live in communities that exceed federal ozone and PM standards. Increased exposure to harmful emissions has been directly associated with serious health issues, particularly for the elderly, small children and people with pre-existing respiratory issues.  SB 210 is an important step toward combating these harmful pollutants and improving air quality in California.

SB 210 is supported by many leading health, environmental and business organizations, including the American Lung Association of California, Breast Cancer Prevention Partners, California Environmental Justice Alliance, California League of Conservation Voters, CALSTART, Coalition for Clean Air, Environment California, Maternal and Child Health Access and Sierra Club California.  Recently, the California Trucking Association, Associated General Contractors, California Business Industries Association and California Construction and Industrial Materials Association removed their opposition and are now neutral on the legislation.

Following today’s approval by the Assembly Natural Resources Committee, SB 210 now advances to the Assembly Appropriations Committee for consideration.