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Company will pay $300,000 penalty and perform supplemental environmental project valued at $275,000 to replace school buses in areas of environmental justice concern in Columbus, Ohio
CHICAGO (September 13, 2021) – Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a settlement requiring Jeg’s Automotive Inc. of Delaware, Ohio, to pay a $300,000 civil penalty for selling aftermarket motor vehicle parts that EPA alleges violated the Clean Air Act. As part of the settlement, Jeg’s also agrees to perform a supplemental environmental project valued at $275,000 to replace three school buses for Columbus City Schools in areas of environmental justice concern.
“This settlement should send a strong message that EPA will vigorously pursue sales of illegal emission control defeat devices,” said EPA Region 5 Acting Regional Administrator Cheryl Newton. “I am especially pleased that the settlement will reduce the impact of air pollution in already overburdened neighborhoods.”
It is a violation of the Clean Air Act to manufacture, sell or install a part for a motor vehicle that bypasses, defeats or renders inoperative any emission control device. Defeat devices, which are often sold to enhance engine performance, work by disabling a vehicle’s emission controls, causing air pollution.
Between June 1, 2016, and July 23, 2020, Jeg’s sold at least 1,892 defeat devices, including exhaust gas recirculation, or EGR, block plates, pipe kits and electronic control module reprogrammers, also known as tuners. The EGR block plates block the portion of the exhaust gas stream that is diverted back to the engine’s air intake system. The pipe kits enable the removal of a catalytic converter or a diesel particulate filter from the motor vehicles. The tuners prevent the on-board diagnostics from sending trouble codes to activate the check engine light or limp mode. Jeg’s has removed all violative products from its website and will post a notice about the settlement on its website for at least 90 days.
Under the settlement, Jeg’s will perform a supplemental environmental project to benefit Columbus City Schools. Jeg’s will replace three older buses serving areas with environmental justice concerns with new buses featuring modern pollution controls. Environmental justice is the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.
For more information about aftermarket defeat devices for vehicles and engines, visit: https://www.epa.gov/enforcement/national-compliance-initiative-stopping-aftermarket-defeat-devices-vehicles-and-engines