The desk based study assesses the technical readiness of narrow track and high clearance tractors (T2, C2 and T4.1) to meet the European Commission’s pollutant emission Stage IV (mainly targeting reduction of NOx emissions) for non-road mobile machinery (NRMM) engines. These specialist tractors are designed for operation in extremely restricted spaces, for example in orchards or on fruit and vine crops.
An environmental assessment estimated that the non-introduction of Stage IV emission limits in 2019 would have cumulatively generated 14,000 tonnes of NOx by 2021 and this would have reached 65,500 tonnes by 2025. The heavier than air NOx will disperse in a relatively small area, meaning that the vine-growers themselves and the rural towns and villages in and around them will take the majority of the burden from the additional NOx pollution.
Many technologies to abate the NOx emissions were identified with one identified which can fully meet the Stage IV requirements. However, the key concern was the placement of the emission after treatment technologies on the vehicles, the effect on farming methods and the manufacture changes required to realise this. This assessment concluded that it is technically feasible to implement the new pollutant emission Stage IV, for T2, C2 and T4.1 categories of tractors within the timescales available and with some, however minimal, changes to the current farming methods employed.

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