New regulation for vehicle emissions

ERO number
019-0416
Notice type
Regulation
Act
Environmental Protection Act, R.S.O. 1990
Posted by
Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks
Notice stage
Proposal
Proposal posted
Comment period
October 9, 2019 - November 23, 2019 (45 days) Open
Last updated

This consultation closes at 11:59 p.m. on:
November 23, 2019

Proposal summary

A new regulation is being proposed that will clarify and strengthen on-road vehicle emissions requirements and will set out rules around the testing of emissions from heavy diesel commercial motor vehicles.

Proposal details

1. Proposal to Revoke Regulation O. Reg. 361/98: Motor Vehicles under the Environmental Protection Act. R.S.O 1990. c. E. 19

2. Proposal to Make a new Regulation for Vehicle Emissions under the Environmental Protection Act. R.S.O 1990. c. E. 19

This government is taking action to improve programs that protect Ontario’s air and reduce smog-causing pollutants while saving taxpayers money and modernizing services to make life more convenient for drivers and businesses.

(a) Proposed changes for on-road enforcement for all vehicles being driven on Ontario roads (these amendments are proposed to come into effect January 1, 2020):

  • Clarify that on-road emission standards apply to all motor vehicles on Ontario's highways, including out-of-province vehicles.
  • Ensure a vehicle’s originally installed emission control systems are present and operating as intended, by clarifying existing laws that prohibit emission system tampering.
  • Clarify existing requirements related to emissions control defeat devices and introducing a new prohibition for the sale of such devices.
  • Tighten the visible emissions prohibition from fifteen (15) seconds in five minutes to five (5) seconds in a one-minute period.
  • Tighten the current opacity standard for 2008 and newer heavy diesel vehicles to 20% from 30%. The new threshold is more appropriate for newer vehicles which were manufactured with emission systems designed to minimize smoke and soot from the diesel engine.

(b) Proposed changes to enhance and strengthen the Heavy Diesel Commercial Motor Vehicle Emissions Testing Program (these amendments are proposed to come into effect on January 1, 2020):

  • Consistent with the proposed changes to the on-road opacity standards, tighten the current smoke opacity test standard for 2008 and newer heavy diesel commercial motor vehicles to 20% from 30%. The new threshold is more appropriate for newer vehicles which were manufactured with emission systems designed to minimize smoke and soot from the diesel engine.
  • Require an informational computer-based electronic emissions diagnostic test to help identify whether emission control systems are operating as intended for heavy diesel commercial motor vehicles that have a registered gross weight of between 4,500 kgs and 6,350 kgs.
  • Align definitions so that heavy diesel commercial motor vehicles that are required to have an emissions report for permit renewal are also eligible to have emissions tests performed. This will provide clarity for vehicles such as fire trucks and ambulances.

This amendment is proposed to come into effect on July 1, 2020:

  • The requirement to pass a mandatory computer-based electronic emissions diagnostic test to ensure emission control systems are operating as intended for heavy diesel commercial motor vehicles that have a registered gross weight of between 4,500 kgs and 6,350 kgs.

3. Proposal to Amend R.R.O Regulation 628: Vehicle Permits under the Highway Traffic Act. R.S.O 1990. c. H. 8

The following proposals will further strengthen the heavy diesel commercial motor vehicle emission testing program (these amendments are proposed to come into effect on January 1, 2020):

  • Elimination of the existing 20% visible smoke opacity threshold that allowed vehicles to skip a test cycle.
  • Elimination of the exemption for diesel hybrid vehicles.

Regulatory impact statement

A costing analysis was carried out by the Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks with the support of tools provided by the Ministry of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade. It was found that the financial impacts of the proposed regulatory changes (both the test fee and administrative costs) will impact the MUSH sector (municipalities, universities, school boards, hospitals) at an estimated cost of $236,000 in 2020; and $118,000 in the first six months of 2021. The analysis indicates negligible impacts to businesses in the regulated community.

In April 2019, when the Drive Clean light vehicle program was cancelled, there was an estimated savings of $40 million. Both business and the MUSH sector would have benefited from the cancelling of the light vehicle program through the removal of administrative costs associated with having their vehicles tested in the Drive Clean Program. Costs to the MUSH sector may also be reduced through continuing the option to allow municipalities to conduct fleet self testing and avoiding the market rate test fee.

Supporting materials

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Get in touch with the office listed below to find out if materials are available.

Program Management Branch
Address

40 St. Clair Avenue West
Toronto, ON
M4V 1M2
Canada

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