Release 02-29      

July 16, 2002


Jerry Martin
(916) 322-2990

Richard Varenchik
(626) 575-6730
$150,000 Settlement for Selling Non-Compliant Engines

-- The California Air Resources Board (ARB) has settled its case with MTD Products Inc. for $150,000. MTD was found to have distributed utility engines used in lawn and garden equipment that did not comply with state clean air regulations.

“Certification procedures are designed for just such circumstances,” said ARB Executive Officer, Michael Kenny. “It allows us to efficiently monitor the products for sale in California assuring that products that do not meet California pollution limits have not slipped through.”

During the summer of 2000, ARB inspectors found for sale MTD lawn mowers and edgers labeled, “Not for sale in California” at Home Depot stores. Shortly after that, MTD and Pacific Power Equipment Co. (Pacific Power) disclosed to ARB that Pacific Power had distributed in California similarly marked engines on products manufactured by White Outdoor Products Company (WOP). WOP is a subsidiary of MTD.

In May 2002, MTD paid $150,000 for introducing into the California market these non-certified and mislabeled engines. To avoid any further introduction of non-compliant products, MTD has identified how these products came to be delivered and rectified their procedures.

The $150,000 settlement with MTD will go to California’s Air Pollution Control Fund (APCF), which is used to mitigate various sources of pollution throughout the state. The state uses this fund to educate the public and provide programs to minimize the output of smog forming emissions from various sources. Through incentive and buyback programs, the APCF reduces the number of pollution sources.

“Manufacturers must use clear and appropriate labels and certify their products to assure engine compliance and maximize inspection efficiency,” said ARB Executive Officer, Michael Kenny. “Applying incorrect labels and selling uncertified products are violations of California law.”

The Air Resources Board is a department of the California Environmental Protection Agency. ARB’s mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.

The energy challenge facing California is real. Every Californian needs to take immediate action to reduce energy consumption. For a list of simple ways you can reduce demand and cut your energy cost, see our website at