EPA Expert Opines on Certification of Conformity Suit

Joseph O'Neill

Written by
— Updated on April 11, 2018

EPA Expert WitnessThis case involves two companies that were selling energy conversion kits. One company filed for a Certification of Conformity through the EPA and waited until it had received the certification before selling its product. The other company sold the kits without the certification. The company obtaining the Certification alleged that they were put at a competitive disadvantage because the competitor did not follow the certification process, and thus were able to enter and establish themselves in the market before they could. They also alleged this certification is a requirement by the EPA in order to sell these products, rather than a guideline. The defendant was selling the conversion kits as individual parts to individual consumers, and not to manufacturers who then take these kits, applies it to their engine products and then resells the whole unit.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Please describe your experience with EPA certifications and regulations.
  • 2. What does EPA 40 CFR Section 1054.645 require if a company is not a manufacturer and selling products individually?

Expert Witness Response E-085712

I have worked with the US EPA and the California Engine and Aftermarket Parts certifications and regulations for 12 years. Prior to that, I have been involved with federal and state (many states) regulations and certifications for over 40 years, including drafting rules, commenting on rules and implementing or enforcing rules when working for state environmental agencies and the US EPA.

The following is an exerpt from 40CFR 1054.645, as they relate to conversion kits:
(e) Entities producing conversion kits may obtain certificates of conformity for the converted engines. Such entities are engine manufacturers for purposes of this part.

Basically, the engine manufacturer is the party responsible for the certified model, not the aftermarket parts seller. I was involved in an aftermarket parts study in California for purpose of the State agency determining if they wanted to regulate aftermarket part conversions of certified engines. So far California does not see an overwhelming case for it.

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