In Vermont, motor vehicles are the largest source of greenhouse gases and a number of other air pollutants that threaten human health and our environment. Unnecessary idling harms human health, pollutes the air, wastes fuel and money, and causes excess engine wear. And it’s against the law.
Vermont’s Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) program, authorized under section 177 of the Clean Air Act, has been a centerpiece of Vermont’s air quality efforts since 1996. The Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) program, which is a technology-forcing component of the LEV program, has been a major contributor to the successful commercialization of hybrid-electric vehicles and ultra-low-emission technologies. To date, 13 states have adopted the ZEV Program (California, Colorado, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington).
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency awards grants under the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) to assist States in their efforts to develop diesel emissions reduction programs. The Vermont Diesel Emissions Reduction Financial Assistance Program was developed to provide technical assistance and incentive funding for projects that reduce diesel emissions from engines, vehicles, and equipment in Vermont with the goals of reducing public exposure to emissions from diesel-powered engines and the associated risks to public health and the environment.
Vermont’s Vehicle Emissions Inspection and Maintenance Program helps to ensure that Vermont vehicles remain clean throughout their useful lives by requiring annual testing of vehicle emissions control systems and repairs if needed. The program is managed jointly by the Department of Motor Vehicles and the Air Quality and Climate Division.
Motor vehicles, while an essential mode of transportation in a rural state like Vermont, are a major source of air pollutants that are associated with a variety of environmental and human health threats, including, but not limited to climate change, ground level ozone, air toxics, acid precipitation, and regional haze.
Mobile sources, primarily motor vehicles, are the largest source of a number of air pollutants in Vermont, including greenhouse gases, air toxics, the ozone precursors (volatile organic compounds and nitrogen oxides), and carbon monoxide. In order to reduce the impact of mobile source emissions on air quality and human health, the Mobile Sources Section implements and manages a number of programs and strategies for controlling on-road and non-road mobile sources of air pollution.