WASHINGTON, D.C. --- Diesel fuel refiners have begun producing cleaner-burning fuel to comply with the Highway Diesel Rule, which was finalized back in January 2001. Beginning with the 2007 model year, harmful pollution from heavy-duty highway vehicles will be reduced by more than 90 percent because of the new standards, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. These EPA standards require a 97-percent drop in the sulfur content of highway diesel fuel from its previous level of 500 parts per million (low sulfur diesel) to 15 parts per million (ultra-low sulfur diesel) for use in highway vehicles. Engine manufacturers have the flexibility to meet the new standards through a phase-in approach between 2007 and 2010, the EPA said. Some refiners, particularly small operations, will be given additional time to make adjustments. But once new standards are fully implemented, the EPA estimates that 2.6 million tons of smog-causing nitrogen oxide emissions will be reduced annually.

Originally posted on Fleet Financials