Ford has agreed to fines totaling $2.96 million for violations of air quality laws related to the sale of vehicles with non-compliant on-board diagnostic (OBD) systems in California, according to the California Air Resources Board (ARB).
Of the $2.96 million, $740,000 will go to the California Pollution Control Financing Authority (CPCFA), which provides financial assistance to projects aimed at reducing pollution and waste and encouraging the use of renewable energy. Funds from this settlement will go to assist small business owners in financing retrofits or upgrades of heavy-duty diesel trucks or buses to meet California’s clean air regulations. Officials estimate the money will support loans for about 90 clean-diesel vehicles.
In addition to the $740,000 for the CPCFA, Ford will pay $2.22 million dollars to the California Air Pollution Control Fund, which was established to decrease air pollution through education and the advancement and use of cleaner technologies.
Routine ARB testing revealed that 2011 and 2012 model year Ford Fiesta vehicles were sold in California with non-compliant diagnostic systems and improperly designed data link connectors. These systems were found to not properly monitor the function of several key emissions control systems, including the catalytic converter and fuel system. The data link problems discovered by ARB staff make use of the OBD system more difficult by Smog Check inspectors and independent service providers using widely available diagnostic tools. Staff also found there were several instances of failure by Ford to disclose all legally required vehicle calibration information essential to determining the effectiveness and compliance of the OBD system.
ARB says Ford fully cooperated in the investigation.
Last month, Ford, BMW, GM, Honda and 10 other leading automakers agreed a set of expectations for suppliers, relating to the environment, working conditions, human rights and business ethics.
The carmakers agreeing to the “Automotive Industry Guiding Principles to Enhance Sustainability Performance in the Supply Chain“ also include Chrysler, Daimler, Fiat S.p.A., Jaguar/Land Rover, PSA Peugeot Citroen, Scania, Toyota, Volkswagen, Volvo Cars and Volvo Group.