Outboard engine makers back Australian emission standards bill

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Outboard engine manufacturers that include Honda, BRP (Evinrude) and Suzuki are supporting an Australian bill that would toughen emission standards so they are on par with U.S. rules.

The Product Emissions Standards Bill was introduced in Parliament last week and is expected to pass by the end of the year, Australian marine trade publication Marine Business said.

“Manufacturers, retailers, and importers should start planning to move their product lines to meet U.S. E.P.A. [Environmental Protection Agency] and equivalent international standards now to ensure they have compliant products when the standards commence,” said the Department of the Environment and Energy on its website.

The new bill was welcomed by a number of outboard manufacturers.

“We are happy to support the bill and any steps the federal government introduces to improve Australia’s air quality and manage the environmental regulations associated with the marine industry,” John Haines of The Haines Group told Marine Business.

“While Suzuki’s outboard range already feature technologies that provide a number of efficiencies and benefits to our customers, we will continue to work with and support the government to reduce our environmental footprint in any way for a cleaner energy future.”

The Outboard Engine Distributors Association of Australia also welcomed the bill.

“OEDA has always supported emission standards through self-regulation, and over the last few years has successfully reduced emissions from its engines significantly. In June 2017, of all the outboard engines sold in Australia, over 67 percent were compliant with the new proposed regulations. In fact, from 40hp and above, over 90 percent were compliant, and from 91hp and above, all engines sold were compliant.

“There is no impact within the new bill for current non-compliant outboard owners. Current non-compliant products will continue to be sold in a buoyant second-hand market and remain available to purchase new until the date set out in the rules of the regulation is reached.”