R 314
2018 -- S 2963
Enacted 06/19/2018

S E N A T E   R E S O L U T I O N

Introduced By: Senator V. Susan Sosnowski
Date Introduced: June 07, 2018

     WHEREAS, Motor vehicle exhaust is the largest source of air pollution in Rhode Island,
and idling vehicles emit higher concentrations of harmful pollutants than moving vehicles; and
     WHEREAS, Vehicle exhaust is hazardous to human health. Studies have linked pollution
from vehicles to increased rates of cancer, lung and heart disease, asthma and allergies, urban
smog and climate change; and
     WHEREAS, Collectively, cars and trucks account for nearly one-fifth of all United States
emissions and emissions from vehicles contribute significantly to air pollution, and are a
significant cause of climate change; and
     WHEREAS, Numerous traffic studies have found links between exposure to fine
particles and health effects including increased incidents of asthma, allergies, and other breathing
disorders, and premature death; and
     WHEREAS, Vehicle idling often occurs in locations such as school grounds, parking
lots, distribution centers, strip malls, construction sites and business centers where residents are
exposed to concentrated sources of air pollutant emissions; and
     WHEREAS, Asthma is a significant public health concern in Rhode Island, especially
among children and the elderly; and
     WHEREAS, Fine particulate matter in exhaust is particularly harmful to children and
seniors. Tiny particles can lodge deep within human lungs, where they can trigger asthma attacks
and stunt lung growth in children, and contribute to chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder and
heart attacks in seniors; and
     WHEREAS, Petroleum-based gasoline and diesel fuel are non-renewable fuels and
should be used wisely and not wasted; and
     WHEREAS, Vehicle idling wastes money by burning fuel, creates the need for more
frequent oil and oil filter changes, and speeds engine wear; and
     WHEREAS, Reducing air emissions and conserving fuel can be accomplished by
restricting the unnecessary operation of engines; and
     WHEREAS, Even on the coldest winter days, modern engines need no more than five
minutes to warm up; and
     WHEREAS, Current state law prohibits the idling of diesel vehicles for more than five
minutes per hour and studies have shown that an anti-idling policy for gasoline and diesel
vehicles will save fuel, prolong engine life and improve air quality; now, therefore be it
     RESOLVED, That this Senate of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations
hereby supports the adoption of a strong vehicle anti-idling policy to:
     1. Encourage motor vehicle drivers to turn off their engines immediately at schools and
off-site school related events to minimize exposure of students and others to unnecessary harmful
     2. Maintain state vehicles to eliminate any visible exhaust and comply with the annual
inspection requirement for those vehicles; and avoid idling unnecessarily on and off worksites;
     3. Promote the widespread use of emission controls in state construction contracts;
     4. Support education of the public about the health, environmental and economic impacts
of idling and the benefits of turning a vehicle off;
     5. Designate Idle Free Zones throughout Rhode Island including places such as libraries,
parking lots, drive-through lines and medical facilities; and
     6. Enforce the anti-idling law in title 31 chapter 16.1 of the Rhode Island General Laws
for diesel engines; and be it further
     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to
transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to Governor Gina Raimondo, and the Director of
the Rhode Island Department of Revenue.