EPA

Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor

In less than six months, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Interim Tier 4 emission standards will go into effect for many types of off-road diesel powered equipment used in underground construction, and equipment owners and operators are devoting increasing attention to the changes they will bring.

New Holland announced its solution to meet the Tier 4 interim emissions standards, which will be effective in 2011.

It looks like Congress will give cities and counties some new flexibility in funding drinking water and sewer projects. The Small Business and Infrastructure Jobs Tax Act of 2010 (H.R. 4849) that passed in the House, 246 - 178 on March 24, has a provision which allows states to issue private activity bonds for water projects without counting the value of those bonds toward state caps.

Congressional concern about "fracing" took another step forward when the chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee sent letters to eight companies asking for details on the chemicals they use during horizontal drilling of shale gas deposits. Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA), chairman of the committee, implied in a memorandum to committee members that the "Big Three" of fracing may have violated a voluntary memorandum of agreement they signed with the EPA in 2005.

Jeff Griffin, Senior Editor

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Interim Tier 4 emission standards for off-road equipment powered by diesel engines of 175 to less than 750 horsepower will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2011. From that date through Tier 4’s final implementation in 2014, the equipment marketplace will begin to change for equipment manufacturers and dealers and their customers.

Stephen Barlas, Washington Editor

The biggest issue for the underground construction industry in 2010 is not whether Congress and the Obama administration will unveil a second round of infrastructure spending, but whether that second helping of funds for sewers and drinking water systems will find its way into financial bloodstreams faster than the first injection did.

The Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) kicked off a landmark rehabilitation project Jan. 7, marking the first time WSSC has been awarded federal funding for a reconstruction project through the Maryland Department of the Environment.

Stephen Barlas, Washington Editor

Members of Congress are raising concerns about the prospective failure of cities and counties to spend appropriated stimulus funds for wastewater and drinking water projects, a concern top Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials say is justified.

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