by Susanne Rust
State officials are taking a step back from reducing air pollution.
The California Air Resources Board is planning on rolling back diesel emission limits for trucks, buses, bulldozers, backhoes and other construction equipment.
The move will “extend relief to businesses, particularly the construction industry, which is really suffering,” said Karen Caesar, board spokeswoman.
The board also reports that initial estimates for emissions from off-road diesel engines were too high.
A new analysis by the state [PDF], which includes figures obtained during the recession, shows an “80 percent reduction in emissions from what had previously been estimated, with about half of this reduction the result of the recession, and about half to changes in inventory methods.”
But health experts and clean technology manufacturers are crying foul.