Sat, 15 May 2004

Private cars' emission proved higher than standards

Leony Aurora Jakarta

Private car owners were given the chance to calculate their personal contribution to air pollution when they received free gas emission tests on Friday morning at the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle in Central Jakarta.

In the two hours after the tests kicked off at 9 a.m., 31 of 75 tested cars failed to pass, as their emissions were higher than the approved standard.

From 41 petrol-fueled cars, 20 failed and did not receive a green sticker signifying that they had met the standard. Meanwhile, 10 of 34 diesel-fueled cars did not comply with the standard either.

The free test -- the fifth of a series of nine planned to take place in Greater Jakarta in April and May -- was arranged by the Office of the State Minister of the Environment and the city administration to heighten public awareness of Gubernatorial Decree No. 95/2000 on the inspection and maintenance of private cars.

"The decree will take effect in September," head of the Jakarta Environmental Management Agency (BPLHD) Kosasih Wirahadikusumah said.

As a decree does not carry legal sanctions, the administration will enforce it through administrative measures. For example, motorists who fail to obtain the green emission sticker will not be able to obtain their vehicle registration documents, explained Kosasih.

Jakartans must have their vehicles tested at least once a year by one of 107 certified operators in 50 garages, appointed by the "clean-air team". The garages include several Auto 2000 garages and an Audi Center in North Jakarta.

Masnellyarti of the state minister's office urged the administration to produce a bylaw to support the policy.

"With a bylaw, law enforcement would be easier," he said.

Kosasih explained that a bylaw on air pollution was in process but expressed doubt that it would be endorsed in the near future. "We hope the next City Council will endorse the bylaw," he said.

Transportation has contributed to 70 percent of the city's air pollution, followed by industries, 20 percent, and other sources, 10 percent.

Some 315,000 public vehicles operate in Jakarta -- including buses that are notorious for spewing thick black smoke out of their exhaust pipes -- and are responsible for 70 percent of pollution caused by transportation.

Private vehicles -- comprising around 2.79 million motorcycles and 1.5 million cars -- are responsible for the other 30 percent.

The state minister's office and the administration will hold four more free emission tests in Jakarta. A total of 2,000 private vehicles are expected to have been tested by the end of the series. The results will be announced on June 5.

I-box Gas emission standards for vehicles .TB2.30" 3.40" Petrol fuel Carburetor system Production year CO(%) HC(ppm) < 1985 4.0 1,000 1986 - 1995 3.5 800

Injection system Production year CO(%) HC(ppm) 1986 - 1995 3.0 600

Solar fuel Production year Opacity(%) < 1985 50 1986 - 1995 45

Source: Jakarta Environmental Management Agency