Workplan for vehicle and engine emission control: Canada-US air quality agreement

General Areas of Collaboration

Under the “Agreement Between the Government of the United States of America and the Government of Canada on Air Quality” dated 13 March 1991, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Environment Canada (EC) are setting forth a workplan to address mobile source emission control issues including information related to mobile source emissions and fuels.  The Government of Canada’s “Regulatory Framework for Air Emissions” commits to aligning Canada’s on-road and off-road vehicles and engine regulations with stringent US federal rules to reduce air pollutant emissions.

EPA and EC (“the Parties”) plan to work together on integrated vehicle and fuel programs including programs to reduce smog forming emissions and greenhouse gases (GHGs) from the transportation sector and work toward harmonized programs for sustainable transport and goods movement.

The Parties plan to meet at least annually to review the individual elements of this workplan.

1.  Coordination and cooperation on national standards and on international standards and agreements: 

  1. The Parties plan to continue to work together to align and harmonize vehicle, engine and fuel standards between the two countries.  The Parties also plan to  collaborate on renewable fuels issues under this item.
  2. The Parties plan to inform each other regarding planned or desired changes to standards and share relevant data where appropriate.
  3. The Parties each participate in numerous vehicle, fuel and engine standard setting processes around the world.   The Parties plan to continue to work together on coordinated approaches toward the development of international air pollution standards in groups such as the United Nations’ World Forum for Harmonization of Vehicle Regulations (WP 29) and the International Maritime Organization (IMO).

2.  Vehicle and engine compliance programs:

  1. Emission Testing:  The Parties plan to undertake emission testing activities that will allow the Parties to optimize vehicle and engine fleet emissions testing and to share advantages of any unique testing capabilities held by one party.  Such testing may include the use of appropriate state or provincial capabilities.1 Each party recognizes that the use of the test data generated by the other party may be limited by statutory, regulatory, or internal policy requirements.  In such cases the data will be useful for identifying engines or vehicles that warrant further testing. 
  2. Sharing of Vehicle, Engine and Fuels Compliance Data:  The Parties each receive large amounts of data under requirements of the respective federal  programs and as a result of state/provincial programs.  Often, such data is useful in helping to identify whether particular vehicles and engines are likely to comply with emission standards for their full useful lives and for other compliance purposes.  The Parties plan to work together to develop a systematic approach to share appropriate reports, compliance testing data, emission results and other data collected or generated through the operation of each party’s mobile source program.  Such approach will respect all appropriate constraints placed on data by business confidentiality claims in each country.
  3. Research and Development in Support of Regulatory Development:  The Parties plan to continue to collaborate, where appropriate, in R&D projects of mutual interest that support regulatory development.  For example, this work could include collaboration on mobile source emissions modeling or on the development of appropriate test methods for advanced technology vehicles.
  4. More Detail:  See Annexes 1 and 2.

3.  Greenhouse gas emission from motor vehicles and fuels:

  1. The US EPA plans to propose GHG regulations for certain motor vehicles by the end of 2007 with a timetable for final action by the end of 2008.  Consistent with the objective to harmonize emission standards as identified in section 1(a) above, the Parties plan to share information on GHG standards and discuss different strategies and approaches.
  2. The Parties plan to work together on life cycle emission analyses for transportation fuels including low carbon fuels.
  3. The Parties plan to share and discuss information such as emission models, assessment of technological changes to improve GHG performance, potential options for emission standards and assessment of impacts on the regulated community.
  4. The Parties plan to establish an EPA-EC Liaison Group to coordinate the activities set forth in a, b and c above.

4.  Innovative programs to reduce emissions:

  1. Both Parties are involved with innovative programs to retrofit diesel engines for lower emissions.  Recognizing that the target diesel operators, available retrofit technologies and delivery mechanisms are the same or similar in both countries, the Parties plan to share information and tools from their respective programs and look for opportunities to coordinate the programs. 
  2. More Detail:  See Annex 3. 

Annexes:  Specific Areas of Collaboration and Coordination

Annex 1: Vehicle and engine compliance programs

  1. The Parties recognize that each possesses emission testing facilities and that collaboration is mutually beneficial in cases such as those that arise:
    1. when there are vehicles or engines that one party can test that the other lacks the facilities or capacity to test. 
    2. for categories of vehicles or engines where both Parties have similar testing facilities during periods when one party cannot perform a particular type of compliance testing due to such things as test cell repairs or modernization work, or extraordinary internal testing demands.
    3. for categories of vehicles or engines where both Parties have similar testing facilities and both Parties desire to avoid duplicative emission testing.The Parties plan to work together to allocate testing equitably so that each can benefit from the other’s testing assets, so that duplicative testing can be avoided and so that greater fractions of vehicle and engine fleets can be covered by testing.
  2. The Parties plan to meet, at least annually, to share upcoming engine and vehicle emission testing plans.  Such meetings will generally be in person and will alternate between Canada and the US, but may be conducted by phone or videoconference.  The meetings will include discussions of necessary and/or available correlation projects.  
  3. The Parties intend to coordinate vehicle and engine emissions compliance monitoring and performance verification activities related to a variety of mobile source sectors including:
    1. motorcycles and recreational vehicles
    2. light duty vehicles and trucks
    3. heavy duty diesel engines and vehicles
    4. heavy duty spark ignition vehicles
    5. nonroad diesel engines
    6. nonroad spark ignition engines
    7. heavy-duty hybrid vehicles
    8. other mobile source sectors as agreed to by the Parties.
  4. The Parties plan to participate in regular laboratory correlation, including correlation activities with outside entities to help ensure emission data quality and test program integrity.  Except where issues associated with confidential business information exist, the Parties intend to share fully all data derived from correlation activities. 
  5. The Parties plan to collaborate on the development of testing protocols, monitoring procedures, and modeling techniques for all categories of vehicles and engines.  The Parties intend to advise each other of major air quality initiatives, research projects, or demonstration projects each plans to undertake.  

Annex 2: Sharing of vehicle and engine compliance data and fuels compliance data

  1. The Parties each receive large amounts of data under requirements of their individual programs and as a result of state/provincial programs.  Such data is useful in helping to identify whether particular vehicles and engines are likely to  comply with emission standards for their full useful lives.
  2. Except where issues associated with confidential business information exist, the Parties intend to develop channels and procedures to share appropriate data, including but not limited to data from:
    1. vehicle and engine certification
    2. manufacturer and Agency production line testing
    3. manufacturer and Agency in-use testing
    4. production and sales reporting
    5. averaging, banking and trading of emission credits from certification
    6. emission defect reporting requirements or Agency investigations
    7. percentage phase-ins with new emission standards
    8. fuels characterization information 
    9. fuel additive information
    10. percentage phase-ins with new fuel requirements e.g. sulfur, benzene.
  3. Where data can be shared, the Parties plan to develop mechanisms by which to share the data.  Where business confidentiality claims prevent the data from being shared initially, and the other party desires to obtain the information, both Parties intend to work with the submitter.  In cases where the submitter will not approve the data to be shared, the Parties intend to work together to determine whether composite, averaged or otherwise aggregated data can meet the needs of the requestor and still protect the business confidentiality interests of the submitter.

Annex 3: Innovative programs to reduce emissions

  1. Diesel Retrofit:    EPA has an established diesel retrofit program that has received regular federal funding for the last several years.  Additionally, EPA has managed several pilot retrofit projects in other countries.  Over the past several years, Environment Canada has delivered urban bus retrofit initiatives in cities across Canada, including school bus and municipal vehicle retrofit pilots in British Columbia.
    1. EPA plans to hold an informal workshop at its Washington DC offices for interested Canadian personnel -- Federal and Provincial. The purpose of the workshop will be for the parties to share information about different retrofit projects, retrofit experiences and approaches to technology verification.  EPA believes that some technology vendors would participate.
    2. EPA has regional collaboratives around the U.S. that encompass several states each.  Within these collaboratives states work together to promote diesel retrofits, leverage funds and disseminate information about the benefits of retrofit.  EPA intends to encourage the collaboratives that abut the Canadian border to include the adjacent Canadian provinces where possible.
    3. The Parties plan to share such results, summaries, and analytical tools and testing protocols that each may have or develop, on a regular basis, and to alert each other in advance to significant retrofit projects, events or activities.
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