For years, commercial sportfishing boats have been repowering from Tier 1 engines to lower emission Tier 3 engines. Today, it is estimated that over 40% of the fleet is powered by Tier 3 and 70-75% of the fleet will have voluntarily installed lower-emission Tier 3 engines within 5 years.
The transition to lower emission engines has been possible due to the State’s Carl Moyer Program. However, boat owners are not guaranteed funding, in whole or part. Ironically, CARB’s proposed rule change will deny boats access to this program and cannot be used to purchase the mandated vessels the rule would require.
CARB has not taken into consideration that California fishery, habitat and wildlife conservation programs administered by the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) are funded in part by recreational fishing licenses. As boats are removed from service, fishing participation rates and license sales will decline, threatening funding for fishery programs, wildlife protection and the preservation of their natural habitats.