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Jan 30, 2001

You Have Until February 6 To Comment On EPA Proposal To Apply Tough California Emissions Standards Nationwide

In response to a court decree related to a Sierra Club lawsuit, The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is considering adopting California's strict emissions standards for street and off-road motorcycles as a national standard, effective September 14, 2001.

A December 7, 2000 EPA document entitled "Control of Emissions From Non-Road Large Spark Ignition Engines, Recreational Engines (Marine and Land-Based), and Highway Motorcycles," includes proposals to prevent owners from "tampering" with vehicles and could ban the installation of aftermarket exhaust systems and high-performance parts as well as make it illegal to rejet carburetors or reprogram fuel injection systems. The public comment period on the proposal ends February 6, 2001.

According to research by the Motorcycle Riders' Foundation and the State Motorcyclists' Rights Organization, the latest available EPA figures show that cars, light trucks and sport utility vehicles traveled 2.4 trillion miles in a typical year, while an estimated 5.1 million street motorcycles traveled an average of 2613 miles per year, or 0.55 percent of the miles driven by cars. The California Air Resources Board (C.A.R.B.) estimates the average emissions generated by street bikes is 0.96 grams of hydrocarbons per mile, which means that street motorcycles are responsible for 0.006 percent of all motor vehicle emissions.

Concerned motorcyclists can express their opinion by writing to their Congressman and Senators, and directly to Margaret Borushko, U.S. EPA National Vehicle and Fuels Emission Laboratory, 2000 Traverwood, Ann Arbor, MI 48105.