Anti-environmentalists strike again with their petty protests. Its called “rolling coal.” Perhaps you’ve seen it, plumes of thick black smoke blowing from the chrome stacks of a tricked out diesel, aiming straight for a biker or Prius. Eco News Network sat down with Tamara Layton of Elite Diesel Engineering in Wheatridge, Colorado to see what the professionals think of this new trend.
To get the record straight, Layton wanted us to know that some trucks just smoke “because that’s what diesels do.”
But we’re not talking about the unavoidable exhaust; we’re talking about pure soot spewing from these trucks. This is accomplished by increasing and redirecting fuel intake. Some coal rollers call this “Prius Repellent,” but according to the EPA, it’s illegal to tamper with the pollution levels of a vehicle. According to the Clean Air Task Force, diesel emissions contribute to toxic pollutants that are responsible for nearly 21,000 premature deaths a year.
Rolling Coal also ruins the fuel economy benefits of the diesel trucks and hurts their overall performance. This doesn’t seem to bother these truck owners. In fact, it just adds to their statement.
But not all diesel buffs are willing to back coal rolling. Layton says this is not something they help their customers at Elite with (even though some people are willing to drop nearly $5,000 for the modification), “We do help our customers to improve the performance of their trucks, which can increase the smoke output somewhat but when customers call wanting ‘more black smoke’ we tell them we cannot help them. The customer calling for more black smoke is typically in the 18-25 year age.”
There are several schools of thought on the motivation of these young Coal Rollers: anti-Obama protests, anti-EPA, anti-Prius, a way to blow off some road raging steam, and maybe some people just think it looks cool. “I believe the [political] statement is coming from a small percentage of uneducated individuals,” says Layton. But if this is the twisted thought process of the up-and-coming generation, perhaps we should be a little worried.”
Thankfully there are companies like Elite Diesel Engineering who are willing to say no, who choose the environment and the health of the masses over the potential for a greater profit margin.
Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons/ EPA