Mayor Sullivan: It’s the “end of the road” for Anchorage’s Vehicle Inspection & Maintenance Program (I/M)
Contact: Sarah Erkmann
Mayor Dan Sullivan announced today that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved the State of Alaska’s and Municipality of Anchorage’s plan to eliminate I/M testing in Anchorage.
“This was a long time in coming, and we’re pleased that the EPA approved our plan,” said Mayor Sullivan. “While the program was originally useful, it is no longer needed to assure that Anchorage has clean, breathable air.”
In May 2010, the Anchorage Assembly approved Mayor Sullivan’s ordinance to repeal the I/M program. In order to terminate the program, federal regulations required the Municipality to revise its portion of the current State Implementation Plan (SIP) for air quality. With revisions complete, the plan was forwarded to the State of Alaska for approval. In September 2010, the plan was then sent to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Region 10 office for review and approval.
On January 10, 2012, the EPA published their final decision approving the State’s plan to remove the I/M program as an active control measure in the Anchorage carbon monoxide (CO) maintenance plan because Anchorage satisfies the requirements of the Clean Air Act (CAA) without the program and vehicle emissions are projected to continue to decline through 2023. Anchorage will retain the legal authority necessary to implement the I/M program as a contingency measure under the CO SIP.
In 2010, the Assembly also approved a six-month phase out period once the program was decertified by the EPA. Today, however, Mayor Sullivan announced that he plans to ask the Assembly to rescind that action and terminate I/M as soon as is legally allowable.
If approved, this would set a new date for officially ending the program.