Letters to the Editor

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

No commercial vehicle idling emission regs set by City of Fredericton or Province

FREDERICTON – The City of Fredericton and the Province of New Brunswick currently have no air quality regulations in place when it comes to commercial transport trucks parked and idling for long periods of time within municipal boundaries. 

“We don’t have any air quality by-laws that we are aware of for commercial vehicles, “ said Fredericton  by-law enforcement officer Don Veysey. “We have regulations for city vehicle emissions, but not for commercial ones,” he said.

Above, a commercial transport truck idling in downtown Fredericton today.

In checking with the Province’s climate change division of the Dept. of Environment, Martin Boulerice made similar comments regarding emission legislation of general commercial vehicles.

“There is no national or provincial regulation on idling parked vehicles [within municipalities]…only provincial vehicles,” he said.

When asked why, Boulerice said vehicle emission standards are often assumed to be sufficient.

Commercial truckers spoken to by this publication on the topic, who preferred to remain anonymous, said they left their large transport trucks idling in Fredericton city limits because it’s hard to get them started on a cold winter day after being shut off. 

However, Boulerice disputed this.

“That used to be true for the older trucks but not for those nowadays,” he said.

The New Brunswick Lung Association was responsible for the City and Province establishing policies for air quality emission standards on their vehicles. President and CEO, Barb MacKinnon, weighed in on the idling issue commercial vehicles pose to the citizens the lobby represents saying, "It is important to get the message out that vehicle emissions are toxic to our health..."

Further research found neither the City of Saint John, nor the City of Moncton, have emission standards for the idling of large commercial transport trucks within city limits. Their policies are limited to their own city vehicles.

Above, the lights are on but nobody is home. This backhoe was left idling in the parking lot of a downtown apartment complex in Fredericton today.