CA to Ban Black Cars! Not.

Published: March 28, 2009

By now you’ve undoubtedly heard at least two versions of the story about the California Air Resources Board seeking to ban black cars. It was widely noted yesterday by everyone from Rush Limbaugh to every state and local pundit. Heck, if I’d have had time, I’d have done one myself.

It was a juicy story, wasn’t it? Yet another California state agency run amok. Then it turns out ARB had eliminated that section of the reg, not in response to public outcry mind you, if that section ever existed in the first place. They might have just been yanking our chain all along.

You can go to their website and check out their revised release for yourself and their response to the dust-up here:

Of note, the proposal now specifies solar control requirements
only for new vehicles windows (glazing).  The original proposed
regulation contained requirements for both vehicle paint and
windows to improve their ability to reflect heat from the sun. 
The intent of the paint requirements was to introduce reflective
paint (currently used in architectural paints to keep houses and
businesses cool) into the automotive arena. The requirement was
never at any point to limit consumer color choices or ban any
colors. Based on input from the automotive industry, paint,
pigment suppliers, and comments from a public workshop held on
March 12th, ARB staff has determined that a clear path to achieve
solar reflectivity for the darker colors has not yet been
identified. We are planning to address the paint-related portion
of the proposal in a future regulatory action.

For another take on the issue you can visit:

So, did the bureaucrats really intend to ban black cars, only to be foiled by an outraged citizenry? That’s hard to say. Young notes that it’s not unusual for CARB to get an earful over its proposed regs, and in this case, “it wasn’t exactly opposition” that killed the paint initiative. “It was an appraisal that the technology was not yet mature enough to deliver what we hoped to achieve.”

Moreover, the CARB PowerPoint presentation that got everyone’s fan belt in a twist never actually recommends that black cars be banned. It merely — “sinisterly,” Rush might say — notes that “jet black remains an issue.”

Still, the timing is interesting. Although the workshop at which the paint plan was discussed was held on March 12, the decision to drop the idea wasn’t made until this week, according to Young — the very same week, sinisterly enough, that Limbaugh referred to the CARB rule makers as tyrants.

For more information on the vital function this Board serves,visit their website below. This is not a fun loving group and often-times their pursuit of things GREEN ends up costing way more than any supposed benefit to the environment. They are currently on a campaign to enforce tire inflation mandates and are delighted to be levying hefty fines against local businesses and trucking firms. Then there’s that mandate for new capture devices to be installed on ALL gas pumps by 4/1/09. Stations that don’t comply, or can’t comply due to the cost of retrofit, will be shut down on that date. It is estimated that anywhere from 25% to 33% of the states gas stations will not be in compliance and may be forced to close. That’s good for California businesses right now. That’ll help a lot.

This is the same state board that mandated arbitrary levels of emissions from wood furniture and products that has driven all but two furniture manufacturers either out of business or out of state.  That’s been a big help for business too.

No it’s not a fun group.

Today, the Air Resources Board (ARB) is reminding owners of California’s approximate 11,000 gas stations to avoid penalties by making sure their dispensing systems meet state emission standards by April 1.

The required improved nozzles and vapor processors will eliminate the daily release of up to ten tons of smog-forming compounds from spillage and fugitive emissions.

“These more efficient dispensers reduce smog forming emissions and protect the environment,” said ARB Chairman Mary Nichols, “all for less than a penny per gallon.”

Ah well then, we’re closing in on those dastardly fugitive emissions. That’s gotta be good. 10 tons of sh** out of the air every day, imagine that. I wonder how you’d measure that, exactly? These have to be some pretty smart folks here. They wouldn’t just arbitrarily make things up in pursuit of some ethereal goal, would they? No, I didn’t think so.

Of course that’s just my $.02. I could be wrong.

The opinions in this commentary are strictly Gene Wunderlich’s personal opinions.
While any reasonable and/or rational indivdual should agree wholeheartedly,
the opinons reflected herein may not necessarily be those of the Southwest Riverside County AOR, or any local or state government or other mental institution.

Last modified: March 28, 2009 at 3:02 pm | Originally published: March 28, 2009 at 3:02 pm
Printed: September 25, 2020