Washington’s Department of Ecology is ending mandatory emissions testing for vehicles, beginning in 2020. “Despite the end of mandatory emission testing, we believe air quality will continue to improve in the years ahead as newer, cleaner vehicles replace older, less-efficient models.”
In 2005, Legislature passed a plan to phase out the testing procedures as air quality improved to meet federal standards.
According to the press release, the EPA required that not only our air quality improve to meet said federal standards, but would continue to without the testing in place.
If you’re due for testing this year, you should follow through “because it’s the law.” Failure to do so will result in the standard: not getting new tabs, which carries along with it a hefty $228 fine.
So, what’s the incentive to keep up with your emissions, once it’s no longer required? Well, if your check engine light comes on, and you ignore it, you’re going to do significant damage to your car over time. Per the press release, the computer running your car relies on data coming in from emissions control in order to keep the engine properly.
And, of course, for those of you who have been skirting emissions for the last decade or two by claiming a different address: here's how to change the address on your driver’s license.