Questions About Emissions

Friday, July 28, 2017

The Hamilton County air pollution testing needs public review and involvement. I would very much appreciate any of our county commissioners clearing the air on this subject. 

Each year I make a special trip to get my automobile emission system tested just like everyone that owns and operates a vehicle in Hamilton County.  Then, I encounter lines where cars are stacked and idling waiting to be examined by Hamilton County's contractor.  

I believe I paid $9 for the county contractor to collect data on my vehicle, such as mileage and the VIN on my automobile, and conduct testing on my emission system. 

I sold a vehicle recently, and the Car Fax company had all the data collected by the Hamilton County contractor including date, mileage, and testing outcome.  

Someone, please educate me on this subject, it appears the Hamilton County contractor sells the data for profit, and we the people are mandated to pay and participate.  

I have read many citizen objections to the emissions testing program on the Chattanoogan over the years. 

When I observe the operation at the emissions testing from a regulatory perspective, I wonder how many cars stacked in the line idling fail on average and how far they traveled for time sensitive testing.  

On the surface, and without the benefit of data, it appears that a survey is needed to determine how many cars made a special trip solely for emissions testing that is time sensitive to vehicle registration, and how long they idled in the line.  I sat for 15 minutes in a stacked line idling just for the Hamilton County contractor to collect the data they sell.  I even paid them a fee to collect information that has absolutely no relationship to the function of my emissions system. 

I don’t believe the emissions generated under the color of testing are negligible at all.  The viability of emissions testing is dependent on the measured offset of emissions produced for the purpose of testing, and on how many cars fail emissions testing.  

Are we generating more emissions for testing, than abating automobiles that have a faulty emissions system?  That is the question I have.  The public should be provided quantifiable data that addresses these concerns and a measure of cost-benefit. 

The emissions generated from driving to the testing centers, and idling in a stack lined of automobiles to be tested need to be provided to the public. 

The second question I have is about the Hamilton County contractor selling the information they collect from citizens for a fee. Before the emissions testing scam, residents could renew their tags without handing over data, such as mileage.  I am curious, why the Hamilton County contractor needs mileage data for emissions testing? The contractor certainly needs the data to sell to companies, such as Car Fax.  

So, our Hamilton County government mandates that we turn over mileage data to a third contractor that sells the data. 

This entire emissions program needs a solid review from the science of creating emissions to measure emissions, and the selling of data collected. 

Educate us with quantifiable data, county commissioners. 

April Eidson

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