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Rich Kassel, Consultant on clean fuels and vehicles issues, New York City

Rich Kassel

Since the early 1990s, my work has focused on cleaning up our transportation system — cutting pollution from anything with a tailpipe, from cars, trucks and buses to the largest ocean-going ships.

Of all my projects at NRDC, I’m most proud of our Dump Dirty Diesels campaign, which helped create a model to clean up NYC Transit's buses, using cleaner fuels and improved pollution control technologies. That campaign helped create new federal rules to clean up all diesel engines, and also led to our work to create the Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles, which is reducing vehicle pollution in developing countries around the world.

After more than 20 years at NRDC, I’m now working as an environmental consultant at Gladstein, Neandross & Associates, where I continue to work with NRDC to clean up dirty diesel engines in New York, Washington, Mexico, and wherever else we find them.

Recent Posts

Man-Bites-Dog: Toyota sues to stop Mexico's fuel economy program

Posted October 19, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, Moving Beyond Oil, Solving Global Warming

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Yes, the company that brought you the Prius has been quietly working to undermine a multi-year effort to harmonize Mexico’s fuel economy standards with the US standards.   If this is not a man-bites-dog story, I don’t know what is. Here’s...continued

North American Emission Control Area goes into effect today - Important step forward for cleaner ships

Posted August 1, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment

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Today, after a bi-partisan, multi-stakeholder effort that spanned two administrations, the North American Emission Control Area (ECA) goes into effect.  The ECA was adopted by the International Maritime Organization, which governs international shipping, in March 2010. (I wrote about it...continued

House vote today could cost up to 31,000 lives per year

Posted June 20, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, Reviving the World's Oceans

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Today, the Interior Appropriations committee of the House of Representatives will vote on a bill that includes a rider that could undermine years of work to clean up dirty ships and improve the health of the millions of people who...continued

More on the new US/UNEP Initiative to Cut Short-Term Climate Pollutants: a Positive Step for Human Health and the Environment

Posted February 16, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment

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Just this morning, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton unveiled a new international program to cut black carbon, methane, hydroflourocarbons and other short-lived pollutants that add to global warming.  (Teaser alert:  a historical note about Secretary Clinton's longstanding leadership on...continued

EPA: Oil industry assumptions about Tier 3 are wrong

Posted January 27, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Margo Oge, EPA’s Director of Office of Transportation and Air Quality, has confirmed what I wrote in my Tier 3 post last week, which described the agency’s possible approach in its upcoming proposal to create a new rule to reduce emissions...continued

Cutting dirty diesel pollution can reduce global warming while it improves human health

Posted January 18, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Greening China, Health and the Environment, Solving Global Warming

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My colleague, Dan Lashof, just posted a great summary of the study, published in Science this week, that explained how cutting soot and smog pollution could help reduce the impacts of global warming in the short-term, while improving human health and...continued

EPA Tier 3 will cut emissions, improve human health, and put money in people's pockets

Posted January 17, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Last week, I wrote about the need to move Tier 3 forward, which followed up on a letter that the leaders of NRDC, the Environmental Defense Fund, the Sierra Club, and the Union of Concerned Scientists sent to EPA Administrator...continued

When will EPA release its new car pollution proposal?

Posted January 12, 2012 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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This is a post about an EPA proposal that hasn’t been proposed.  It’s a post about a proposal that environmentalists, state air regulators, and industry stakeholders have been waiting a year and a half to see.  And, it’s a post...continued

Latest Japanese fad gives new meaning to the term "Light Trucks"

Posted December 16, 2011 by Rich Kassel in The Media and the Environment

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Are you watching the family next door trick out their front lawn with holiday lights and inflatable lawn Santas, and wondering whether you can top them?  In the spirit of the not writing something serious today (NRDC’s holiday party is...continued

Time to move forward with the right plan to clean up Mexico's dirty diesels

Posted November 30, 2011 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment

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Earlier this week, the Teamsters, Public Citizen, and the Sierra Club filed their latest lawsuit (read more here) in their longstanding dispute about whether Mexican and U.S. trucks should be able to deliver goods in each other’s countries. NRDC is...continued

NRDC joins UNEP to celebrate global elimination of leaded gasoline--A huge step forward for children's health

Posted October 27, 2011 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment

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NRDC Executive Director Peter Lehner and Director of Global Strategy & Advocacy Jacob Scherr joined UNEP Executive Director Achim Steiner at the United Nations today to declare victory in the decades-long campaign to eliminate leaded gasoline worldwide. At the event,...continued

Heading to the Partnership for Clean Fuels and Vehicles annual meeting in Nairobi

Posted October 22, 2011 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment

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One of the great things about working on international vehicle issues is that my work takes me to fascinating places.  This week, I’ll be in Nairobi, where I will be attending the Ninth General Partners Meeting of the Partnership for...continued

Follow-up to yesterday's post: Here's how industry leadership spreads

Posted October 19, 2011 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment

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Yesterday, I wrote about how Maersk was leading the pack in greening its shipping fleet, by switching to low-sulfur fuels and investing in energy-efficient vessels, far in advance of regulatory mandates to do so. I also wrote about how their...continued

Meet the Change-Makers: Maersk leadership is cutting global ship pollution

Posted October 18, 2011 by Rich Kassel

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Today's online edition of OnEarth, NRDC's award-winning magazine, includes an interview with Jacob Sterling, who leads the climate and environmental initiatives at Maersk, the global shipping fleet.  It's part of a continuing series, "Meet the Change-Makers," that highlights business leaders...continued

New WHO Report: 1.34 million premature deaths from urban air pollution worldwide

Posted September 28, 2011 by Rich Kassel in Curbing Pollution, Health and the Environment

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1.34 million urban dwellers face premature deaths every year, according to a new report from the World Health Organization (WHO). According to an AP report in Forbes and elsewhere, cities in Iran, India, Pakistan and Mongolia top the list of...continued

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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