CARB visits Agricultural Operations to discuss proposed Zero-Emission Forklifts

This week, the Association coordinated and participated in a meeting with California Air Resources Board (CARB), SJV Air Pollution Control District, in conjunction with Western Agricultural Processors Association, Nisei Farmers League, Ag Council of California, California Citrus Mutual, California Fresh Fruit Association, California Strawberry Commission, California Strawberry Commission, California Farm Bureau Federation, Fresno County Farm Bureau, California Rice Commission and JM Equipment Company to discuss the potential regulatory concept Zero-Emission forklift Regulation.

The association’s Director of Regulatory Affairs, Priscilla Rodriguez and President & CEO Roger briefed the staff on the concerns surrounding the concept of zero-emission forklift. One major concern is the applicability of the rule. Staff explained the difference between an agricultural operation which operates seasonally and other business, like a distributing warehouse, that operate year around and has the ability to pass along costs. The areas discussed were applicability, costs, opposition to registration requirements, rough terrain forklift and incentive programs.

The meeting included two sites visits, to an almond processor and cotton gin. The onsite visits illustrated the true costs of converting forklift fleet to all electric, employee safety considerations when dealing with lead-acid batteries, the facility upgrades needed, the need for rough terrain forklifts at processing facilities and the importance of incentive funding.

The Association will continue the dialogue and work with CARB staff on this issue. The next workshop will be held February 2022