Release 98-67
October 30, 1998 
CONTACT:  Richard Varenchik
(626) 575-6730
ARB Starts Pilot Auto Scrapping Project to Reduce Smog

        SACRAMENTO A program for purchasing and scrapping 1000 older automobiles to reduce air pollution in the Los Angeles-Riverside-San Bernardino areas is scheduled to be started Nov. 1 by the California Environmental Protection Agency's Air Resources Board (ARB).

        If the two-year pilot program is successful it will be expanded as a way to reduce air pollution and help the South Coast Air Basin (SCAB) meet federally-mandated clean-air goals.

        "Even with the tremendous strides California has made in reducing air pollution, the millions of people and cars in the greater Los Angeles area require new and creative ideas to continue making clean-air gains in that region," said ARB Chairman John Dunlap.

        The ARB pilot program differs from other scrappage programs because each vehicle will undergo a series of tests to calculate the emission benefits from taking it off the road.  Eligible vehicles must also be in streetworthy condition, be registered or primarily operated within the SCAB, and meet a number of other requirements before being accepted for scrapping.

        No emission credits will be created or made available for purchase, sale or trade through the ARB pilot program.

        The scrappage effort will start by offering $500 per vehicle, though that price may be adjusted later if the need arises.  If the project proves successful, ARB hopes to see the program taken over by private industry and expanded to scrap up to 75,000 cars per year, for a 25 tons-per-day reduction in smog-forming emissions in the SCAB by 2010.

        The auto scrapping program is one of the measures included in the State Implementation Plan (SIP), the state's "roadmap" to reduce ozone to levels mandated by the federal government.  Ozone is the main health-damaging component of smog.

        The auto buy-back center is located in Santa Fe Springs, with satellite offices in Rialto and Wilmington.  The phone number, which accepts calls only from within SCAB, is (1-877) 288-7664 or (1-877) CUT SMOG.

        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.

# # # # #