As an owner of a beloved old car (1987 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham) which has served me well for many years and which I keep scrupulously tuned and smog certified, I am much in agreement with this method used in the Valley.
Making a dent
Efforts aimed at gross polluters help clean up air we all breathe.
A private effort to get the worst air-quality offenders off the Valley streets and highways is making headway. The group behind the effort has plans to do much more, and deserves public support.
Valley Clean Air Now is addressing the problem of gross polluters, older cars that spew much more than their share of smog-causing gases into the atmosphere. The non-profit organization — under the sobriquet "Tune-in and Tune-up" — is paying people $500 to help make repairs on their vehicles so they can pass the state's mandatory Smog Check exam.
The group is also using a high-tech method for gauging the emissions from the cars — one the state has declined to adopt despite evidence that it is more effective than the technology now in use at smog testing stations.
Though small in number by comparison with the total of cars and light trucks on the road, gross polluters are responsible for as much as 20% of the smog-making emissions that are produced by vehicles in the Valley. And vehicle emissions are the biggest single culprit in our filthy air.
Cleaning them up — or getting them off the road altogether — is a very cost-effective way to make a serious dent in the Valley's air pollution.