June 7, 2019 3:15 PM, EDT

Top EPA Official Overseeing Trucking Regulations Reassigned to Climate Change Issues

Christopher GrundlerChristopher Grundler by John Sommers II for Transport Topics

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Christopher Grundler, a top U.S. Environmental Protection Agency official who has overseen a number of regulations that impact the trucking industry, has effective Aug. 4 been reassigned to head an EPA division that deals with climate change issues.

Grundler, director of the Office of Transportation and Air Quality, will swap jobs with Sarah Dunham, currently director of the Office of Atmospheric Programs, EPA said in a statement issued June 7.

EPA Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation Bill Wehrum said his office is “very fortunate” to have leaders with Grundler’s and Dunham's levels of experience, expertise, executive skill and commitment to the agency.

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“This brings fresh and different perspectives to these critical EPA offices while providing new leadership opportunities for two outstanding senior executives,” Wehrum said in a statement.

The statement did not offer a reason for the change.

Grundler, who has held the post since 2012, has overseen EPA regulations for glider trucks, EPA Phase 2 greenhouse gas emissions for medium- and heavy-duty trucks and, most recently, oxides of nitrogen reductions planned for 2020. Grundler also has been director of EPA’s Ann Arbor, Mich.-based National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory.

Grundler and his team established and implemented national emissions standards for transportation fuels and vehicles as well as a variety of off-road equipment, according to his agency bio.

“These mobile sources include cars and light trucks, heavy trucks and buses, nonroad engines, marine vessels and airplanes,” the bio said. “OTAQ is continuously evaluating a wide variety of advanced technology strategies which have the potential to reduce harmful emissions and fuel consumption.”

The bio noted that Grundler was part of the team that developed the nation’s first greenhouse gas emissions standards for light- and heavy-duty vehicles. Before that, he helped bring a slate of clean-diesel standards for cars, trucks and construction equipment. Also, he administered a five-year modernization program for the National Vehicle and Fuel Emissions Laboratory, according to the bio.

“As director of OAP, Dunham has managed several of EPA’s partnership programs, such as Energy Star; implemented the Stratospheric Ozone Protection Program under the Montreal Protocol and designed, analyzed and implemented market-based programs that reduce air pollution from large stationary sources,” according to her EPA bio.

The bio said that prior to her experience at EPA, Dunham worked for several years for the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency designing market-based programs to reduce air and water pollution.