EPA Withdraws Racing Emissions Proposal

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If you have a modified track-only motorcycle, then we have some news to share that you will enjoy, as the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has withdrawn proposed language that would have specifically given it the ability to regulate the emissions of production vehicles that were being used at track days or similar events.

The proposed rule caused quite a storm in automotive enthusiast circles, as it would have affected racing and recreational uses of products that have been sold under “race use only” provisions for years. Of course, the larger issue at stake here was the continued selling of race parts to street enthusiasts.

Still, since it is hard to find a motorcycle on the road these days that hasn’t seen its emissions equipment modified, it doesn’t surprise us to see the backlash coming from the motorcycling community.

The effort, lead by Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA), which the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) participated in, saw five members of Congress to propose a bill – aptly called the RPM Act of 2016 – that specifically would have prevented the EPA going forward with its plans.

Seeing the fallout from the proposed rule change, the EPA has withdrawing its stance about regulating production vehicles, even when they are not used on public roads.

To its credit, the AMA is pushing for members of Congress still to enact the RPM Act, in order to ensure a future effort from the EPA does not get ignited.

“The RPM Act would make it clear that it has always been legal to modify motor vehicles – including motorcycles – for competition-only use,” said Wayne Allard, AMA Vice President of Government Relations.

“This practice continued unquestioned until last July, when the EPA proposed a new regulation that would make these conversions illegal. The EPA has never claimed the conversion of street vehicles into competition vehicles was prohibited before this regulation was proposed.”

In an announcement released on Friday, April 15th, the EPA said that it “supports motorsports and its contributions to the American economy and communities all across the country.”

“The EPA’s focus is not on vehicles built or used exclusively for racing, but on companies that don’t play by the rules and that make and sell products that disable pollution controls on motor vehicles used on public roads. These unlawful defeat devices pump dangerous and illegal pollution into the air we breathe.”

“The proposed language in the July 2015 proposal was never intended to represent any change in the law or in EPA’s policies or practices towards dedicated competition vehicles. Since our attempt to clarify led to confusion, EPA has decided to eliminate the proposed language from the final rule.”

Source: AMA