Below is the uncorrected machine-read text of this chapter, intended to provide our own search engines and external engines with highly rich, chapter-representative searchable text of each book. Because it is UNCORRECTED material, please consider the following text as a useful but insufficient proxy for the authoritative book pages.
Appendix E STATEMENT OF GEORGE R. HEATON, JR. While I endorse the technical findings of the Committee, I disagree with some elements of the approach that it adopted toward the questions at hand. Moreover, since I believe that reports such as the Committee's inevitably constitute "policy" statements, an additional comment on the document's policy relevance seems to me to be in order. The Committee chose to confine its inquiry largely to "technical" matters. Thus, the report deliberately avoids explicit comment on the policy choices faced by EPA and the Congress. In retrospect, it appears to me that the Committee focused principally on the state of development of NOX emissions control technology. Accordingly, the two chapters on gasoline and diesel engines comprise the bulk of its report. In my view, the paramount question was: what heavy-duty vehicle NOX requirements should be promulgated under the Clean Air Act? Had this been the Committee's focus, a different kind of report would have emerged, emphasizing more heavily the complex health, economic, and policy design questions involved, without excluding the technical component. Naturally, the Committee was limited by time and resources. Given these constraints, it concentrated its efforts where it believed they would be most productive. I simply disagree with this choice, for two main reasons. First, I believe that under the Clean Air Act, this committee was given the authority and responsibility to comment on the policy determinations inherent in the heavy-duty vehicle NOX rulemaking. Its decision not to do so deprives EPA, the Congress, and the country of valuable information, analysis, and expertise in dealing with a complex regulatory issue. Second, although the Committee thought it could avoid the policy issues, I believe that in fact it could not, and thus, would have done better to address them directly. As it turns out, the report, both in its general orientation and factual findings about emissions control technology, strongly supports the position EPA has taken to date. Implicitly, the Committee's work contains the following policy conclusion: the 75-percent reduction in NOX emissions mandated under the Clean Air Act is not feasible whereas the level now apparently intended by EPA (4 g/bhp-h) is. ll2
ll3 I also feel that within the confines of its technical assessment of NOX emissions control technology, the Committee focused too much on near-term development taking place among the engine manufacturers. Recognizing that the Committee saw the l986 time frame as its context, I nevertheless believe that some broadening of focus would have been appropriate. Technology development is a dynamic process. What occurs in the near term is strongly dependent on how firms see the future, particularly the future of regulatory requirements. If little is required, most certainly little will be developed. The uncertainties involved in technology development to comply with regulation perhaps fall most heavily on supplier firms; nevertheless, these firms have been an important source of innovation in the past, as have foreign firms and new entrants to an industry. In my view, the Committee might have given more consideration to these broader long-term possibilities. The failure to do so tends to lead one to the policy conclusion that strict controls on NOX emissions are not technologically feasible. Going beyond what the Committee has done, my own view is that EPA has too easily and without sufficient analysis abandoned the 75-percent emissions reduction goal in the Clean Air Act. Of course, regulatory decision-making of this sort is fraught with uncertainty, and one cannot be sure about what control technology will be used, or what its cost will be. While others may reasonably resolve their doubts differently, I would resolve mine in favor of the statutory goal. Seeking the strict standard need not have harsh economic effects. Different standards could be set for diesel and gasoline engines, for example, or the time period for compliance might be relaxed. Moreover, a failure by the regulators to adhere to congressional goals can adversely affect the firms that have led in the development of technology. The principal doubt that overlies the whole question of NOX control concerns the diesel engine (i.e. the available control technology, the health effects trade-off between particulates and NC^, and the fuel economy impli- cations). Its resolution could cause my views to change. Not enough is known now about this issue, and more analysis should be done. Lastly, although there are aspects of the Committee's approach and report with which I disagree, I cannot fault the process by which the Committee reached its conclusion. The issues raised in my statement have been aired in the Committee and during the report review period, and the majority of the Committee simply had a different view from my own.