Cleaner trucks needed to fight climate change

Transport Minister Anthony Albanese tells industry 'to get its own house in order' by switching to greener trucks

By Brad Gardner | May 27, 2011

Federal Transport and Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese has thrown his support behind greener trucks, saying they are necessary to address climate change.

In his speech to the Australian Trucking Convention in Canberra, Albanese told the audience almost half of the nation’s heavy vehicles are not subject to modern emissions standards due to their age.

"The Australian Bureau of Statistics tells us that the average Australian truck is more than 14 years old. In Western Europe, North America or Japan, this figure is around eight years," he says.

"Climate change is affecting all of us. Every industry needs to get its own house in order for the good of the country, for the good of our planet."

Referring to the Truck Industry Council’s (TIC) claims, Albanese says older heavy vehicles emit on average the same particulate matter as 60 new Euro 5 trucks.

His comments follow a recommendation from the TIC for pre-1995 vehicles to be forced off the road.

TIC Chief Technical Officer Simon Humphries says many older trucks are poorly maintained, do not meet basic safety and environmental requirements and would not pass a roadworthy inspection.

During his speech, Albanese also spoke of the importance of a National Heavy Vehicle Regulator and the vital contribution trucking operators make to the country.

"You are the people who keep our towns and cities connected. You are the people who move goods from the farm gate to the factories, to the shops and the ports. It is not an exaggeration to say that the future prosperity of this country rests squarely on the shoulders of your industry," he says.

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