Release 05-20      

September 15, 2005


Jerry Martin
Dimitri Stanich
(916) 322-2990

Karen Caesar
(626) 575-6728
ARB Upgrades Clean Gas Can Rules

DIAMOND BAR -- The California Air Resources Board today amended its 1999 clean gas can regulation that sets specifications for how gas cans are manufactured.

"We amended our regulations for gasoline cans because our original rule did not address the use of utility jugs and kerosene containers that are sometimes offered for sale in place of gasoline cans," said Barbara Riordan, ARB Acting Chairman. "While emissions from individual cans are small, the total emissions from cans throughout the state are significant," she added.

ARB data shows that the more than 11 million gasoline cans statewide contribute about 100 tons per day (tpd) of smog-forming hydrocarbons, roughly equal to the emissions from all lawn and garden equipment in the state. The amendments to the 1999 rule will assume that all 70 tpd of smog forming emissions anticipated in the original regulation will be realized by this action.

The amended regulation concentrates on curtailing the use of utility jugs, which are not designed for fuel use but are often sold alongside low emission fuel containers. ARB staff estimates that 13 tpd of hydrocarbons can be reduced by restricting the sales and use of utility jugs as gasoline containers. In addition, the amendments cover kerosene cans, which are also being used in place of certified gasoline cans because they are often less expensive. ARB staff estimates saving three tpd as a result of controlling kerosene cans.

Finally the amendments also address consumer concerns about spillage from gasoline cans. In response to those concerns, the ARB changed some existing requirements for flow-rate and spout design to make them more consumer friendly. While ARB staff does not expect these changes to affect the cost of gasoline cans, the price of kerosene cans could rise as much as $8.50 per container once the regulations are implemented.

"These small changes to the existing regulation will not only further reduce emissions but also result in containers that are easier and better accepted by the public," Riordan added.

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.