• Feb 24th 2010 at 6:22PM
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Cummins Inc. has lodged a settlement in the U.S. District Court for D.C. agreeing to pay a $2.1 million penalty for violating the Clean Air Act. What did Cummins do? Well, it "shipped more than 570,000 heavy duty diesel engines to vehicle equipment manufacturers nationwide without pollution control equipment included" between 1998 and 2006. Even with that many engines sold, Cummins has agreed to recall only 405 of them because that is all that "were found to have reached the ultimate consumers without the correct ATDs in order to install the correct ATDs." (ATD here standing for exhaust After-Treatment Devices like catalytic converters and diesel particulate filters that control pollutants).

What effects did the faulty engines have on the environment? The EPA estimates that "approximately 167 excess tons of nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbon emissions, and 30 excess tons of particulate matter emissions" were released into the air. To make up for this, Cummis will also "permanently retire" enough emission credits to equal the excess tons of pollution. The settlement is subject to a 30-day public comment period.

[Source: Environmental Protection Agency]


Cummins Inc. Agrees to Pay $2.1 Million Penalty for Diesel Engine Clean Air Act Violations

WASHINGTON -- Cummins Inc., a major motor vehicle engine company based in Columbus , Ind. , will pay a $2.1 million penalty and recall 405 engines under a settlement agreement resolving violations of the Clean Air Act, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department announced today.

According to a complaint filed simultaneously with the settlement in federal court in the District of Columbia , between 1998 and 2006, Cummins shipped more than 570,000 heavy duty diesel engines to vehicle equipment manufacturers nationwide without pollution control equipment included, in violation of the Clean Air Act. This equipment, known as exhaust after-treatment devices (ATDs), controls engine exhaust emissions once the emissions have exited the engine and entered the exhaust system. Typical ATDs include catalytic converters and diesel particulate filters.

"Reliable and effective pollution control systems are essential to protect human health and the environment from harmful engine emissions," said Cynthia Giles, assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance. "These requirements are a critical part of EPA's program to reduce air pollution and secure clean air so that all Americans can breathe easier."

"This settlement assures that the environment suffers no ill effects because it requires that Cummins not only install the proper pollution control devices but also mitigate the effects of the harmful emissions released as a result of its actions," said Ignacia S. Moreno, assistant attorney general for the Justice Department's Environment and Natural Resources Division.

Engine manufacturers must prove through testing that their engine designs meet EPA's emissions standards and seek certificates of conformity. According to the complaint, Cummins tested the engines with the ATDs to meet the standards, but failed to include the ATDs with the engines when Cummins shipped the engines to the vehicle manufacturers. Instead, Cummins relied upon the vehicle manufacturers to purchase and install the correct ATDs. The United States alleges that the shipment of engines to vehicle manufacturers without the ATDs violates the Clean Air Act's prohibition on the sale of engines not covered by certificates of conformity.

The settlement requires Cummins to recall approximately 405 engines that were found to have reached the ultimate consumers without the correct ATDs in order to install the correct ATDs.

EPA estimates that Cummins actions resulted in approximately 167 excess tons of nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbon emissions, and 30 excess tons of particulate matter emissions over the lifetime of the non-conforming engines. Cummins will mitigate the effects of excess emissions from its non-conforming engines through permanent retirement of emission credits equal to the excess tons of pollution.

Over half the air pollutants in America come from "mobile sources" of air pollution, such as cars, trucks, buses, motorcycles, construction, agricultural and lawn and garden equipment, marine vessels, outboard motors, jet skis and snowmobiles. Mobile source pollutants include smog-forming volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides, toxic air pollutants such as cancer-causing benzene, and particulate matter or "soot." These pollutants are responsible for asthma and other respiratory illnesses.

The State of California Air Resources Board will receive $420,000 of the civil penalty under a separate settlement agreement with Cummins, continuing a federal government practice of sharing civil penalties with states that participate in clean air enforcement actions.

The Cummins settlement was lodged today in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia , and is subject to a 30-day public comment period.

More information: http://www.epa.gov/compliance/resources/cases/civil/caa/cumminsinc.html

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      Guess that's the price you pay to let your customer play Big Rig with there Dodge Ram.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Dude, it says "heavy-duty" diesel engines. The Ram is a light duty pick-up. These are over the road truck engines, not pick-up engines. Sorry you don't like the Ram much but this story not about them.
        • 5 Years Ago
        ISX and ISM heavy diesels are not used in the Ram. In your haste to be the first to post only shows you know nothing about nothing.
      • 5 Years Ago
      The "Clean Air Act" hammer should be eliminated and put where the man made global warming arses are, in the historical bin of hoax's and scams.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Will you two stop complaining about people bitching! I can't stand when people do that.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Wahhh wahhh wahhh...

        Crying about lifted trucks, too? People will bitch about anything.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Oh no, Nozferat's opinion means so much to me. Q_Q

        Maybe if you weren't a dumbass...
        • 5 Years Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      I can understand not believing in global warming, but to not believe in global poisoning is just foolish.

      Do you think thats clean air your breathing Neo?
        • 5 Years Ago
        Nicely put and agree 100%.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Do the math ! The total cost of the penalty is only $3.68 per engine sold over over an 8 year period.The EPA is a laughing stock and this fine is the joke.
      • 5 Years Ago
      @RK... Wow, just wow. I watched that link and thought, "What a D-bag!". But then I saw all of the related videos, people are PROUD that their modified diesels belch black smoke! And all the positive comments! I had no idea there were people this stupid left in the world.

      Thank you for posting that link, it's pretty disturbing.

      I am not an environmentalist by any means, but people who want their vehicles to do this need serious re-education... The kind where they pin your eyelids open for 6 or 7 hours.
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