Ban Deliberate Discharge of Harmful Vehicle Exhaust


Target: Bruce Rauner, Governor of Illinois

Goal: Outlaw “rolling coal,” or the deliberate discharge of harmful smoke emissions from modified vehicles.

Rolling coal, or the trend of intentionally creating large amounts of black diesel smoke with a vehicle, could soon be outlawed in the state of Illinois. Coal rollers, as they are called, modify their vehicles with smoke stacks and special regulators so that they emit the maximum amount of toxic, environmentally-detrimental diesel smoke in large puffs. Some of these people intentionally discharge the smoke at pedestrians or cyclists, while others do it specifically to mock drivers of low-emission vehicles.

Diesel smoke contains soot and fine particles that aggravate conditions such as asthma and bronchitis, and can even cause dizziness, headaches, and nausea in a healthy person. Long-term exposure has resulted in cardiovascular disease, pulmonary disease, and lung cancer. A study by UK medical journal The Lancet showed that the inhalation of particulates found in diesel smoke is responsible for 7.4 percent of all heart attacks in America.

Not only are diesel emissions harmful to humans, but the environment as well. Diesel particulates contain over 40 hazardous air pollutants, which contribute greatly to smog, acid rain, and climate change. These particles can even work their way into the food supply as they leech into soil and water systems.

If successful, a bill proposed by Rep. Will Guzzardi would make vehicle modifications designed to increase the amount of exhaust illegal, as well as outlaw the deliberate discharge of large quantities of harmful diesel fumes. It would implement a maximum $5,000 fine for offenders. Sign the petition below to show your support for the proposition, which would put an end to the ignorant and harmful practice of rolling coal.


Dear Governor Bruce Rauner,

The state of Illinois is currently considering outlawing rolling coal, or the intentional discharge of large amounts of toxic diesel smoke. These giant puffs of black smoke are achieved by modifying vehicles with smoke stacks and smoke switches that allow the driver to discharge the smoke at will. Sometimes, these vehicle owners target cyclists, pedestrians, or low-emission vehicles as part of anti-environmentalist agendas.

The practice is not only ignorant, but harmful to the health of humans and the environment. Particulates found in diesel fumes cause a host of health issues, such as cardiovascular and respiratory disease, as well as cancer. They contribute to the pollution of our air, water, and farmland. Deliberately releasing an excess of fumes serves absolutely no purpose but to cause harm to people and the environment, and should be outlawed immediately. We, the undersigned, support the initiative to make rolling coal illegal in Illinois.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: US Environmental Protection Agency via Public Domain

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