EPA Reaches $3M Settlement With Companies Over Emissions “Defeat” Devices

The EPA announced on Wednesday that it reached a settlement with JB Automotive LLC, an Iowa company that was accused of selling “defeat” devices used to eliminate emissions controls. These controls are required on vehicles under state and federal Clean Air Act standards. 

This settlement is part of a larger $3 million settlement with Premier Performance of Rexburg, Idaho, JB Automotive is related to the company along with Utah-based RallySportDirect and Arizona-based Stage 3 Motorsports.  The EPA press release alleged that at least 64,299 automobile parts that either “bypass, defeat, or render inoperative” emissions control devices were manufactured or sold by Premier Performance and these related companies.  

“These companies sold tens of thousands of aftermarket defeat devices, and as a result, tens of thousands of trucks now operate without the filters, catalysts, and other emissions controls that help keep our air clean,” said Ed Kowalski, director of EPA Region 10’s Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Division in the EPA’s press release. “These settlements will prevent future violations by requiring the companies to ensure that the products they sell do not adversely affect emissions.” 

The companies reached an agreement with the EPA in February. Under that consent agreement, the companies agreed to stop manufacturing or selling any devices which violate the Clean Air Act. The EPA reported that the company also “implemented work practice standards and procedural safeguards” which will prevent future illegal sales. 

The devices, which are designed for use on diesel engines and diesel trucks, reportedly have a large nitrogen oxide emissions impact. The EPA alleged that removing the emissions control from one truck would make emissions for that truck equivalent to 300 new pickup trucks.  The agency claimed in their press release that this settlement will prevent 3.5 million pounds of air pollution yearly.