California’s air pollution control standards have dramatically reduced the amount of diesel particulate matter in the air and cardiopulmonary deaths attributable to air quality.
UC Berkeley scientists praise state diesel engine regulations and other measures imposed for several years, even despite the easing of environmental regulations in recent years.
If you’ve never seen photos of the city of Los Angeles before the Clean Air Act, they look like something out of the movie. Escape from LA. But the encouraging changes to high-sulfur fuels and the replacement of diesel boats by electric ones have gradually reduced the horror show, despite the fact that they still exist today. more registered cars in the state of California than in any other state.
“Our analysis of DPM (Diesel Particulate Matter) emissions from mobile sources suggests that many California sectoral policies have been highly effective relative to the rest of the US,” write the authors of the article published in Science.
They found that from the period between 1990 and 2014, the amount of DPM in California skies dropped by 78%, while cardiopulmonary and cancer deaths related to diesel pollution dropped by 82%.
The biggest drop came from tractor-trailers, which is not surprising given that they often run on diesel and cover many miles. Reductions were also observed in passenger and construction vehicles, as well as in the maritime sector.
California’s overall diesel consumption actually increased during this period, suggesting that mandates to switch to more refined fuels and upgrade existing vehicles with pollution filters are highly effective strategies (both are recommended for implementation in other states by Berkeley scientists).
Movements toward public and private electric transportation, such as Governor Newsom’s executive order to ban the sale of fossil fuel vehicles beyond 2035, should clear the skies over California substantially more and will be a momentous achievement for one of the world’s largest economies. greats of the country.
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