Caterpillar Pays $2.5 Million for Emissions Violations

July 29, 2011

Caterpillar, denying it did anything wrong, has agreed to pay $2.5 million in fines to settle a lawsuit accusing it of selling noncompliant engines to manufacturers of on- and and off-road equipment.

The Clean Air Act violations alleged that Caterpillar shipped more than 590,000 engines without the correct emissions controls, according to the U.S. Justice Department. Caterpillar also allegedly failed to comply with emission control reporting and engine-labeling requirements.

Under the settlement, Caterpillar must continue its recall and correction of engines that do not have correctly configured emissions controls, according to a statement issued by the EPA. The consent decree requires Caterpillar to install the correct aftertreatment devices and correct fuel injector and fuel map settings. 

Caterpillar says only 925 engines needed to be recalled, not 590,000.

In addition to the recall, Caterpillar will mitigate the effects of the excess emissions from the nonconforming engines through permanent retirement of banked emission credits.

The state of California, through the Air Resources Board, is also settling its claims for violations arising from the sale in California of improperly configured engines. California will receive $510,000 of the civil penalty.