In 2007, the EPA mandated that all gas cans made from 2009 onward conform to a set of regulations that, combined with the requirements of the Children's Gasoline Burn Prevention Act of 2008, resulted in a redesign of portable fuel containers which made them more difficult to use.
Specifically, gas cans must now:
- Use spouts that close automatically, requiring constant force to keep them open
- Use a child-resistant opening mechanism on all openings
- Leak no more than 0.3g per gallon per day of hydrocarbon emissions
Effectively, this creates several problems:
- The user must apply constant force on the spout opening mechanism while pouring, which makes holding the container while pouring more difficult than a regular container, especially with larger, heavier containers.
- The user must operate the child-resistant mechanism before pouring, which makes maintaining force on the opening mechanism more difficult.
- There is no practical way to include a vent; while not explicitly banned by the EPA regulations or the Children's Gasoline Burn Prevention act, any other opening would require its own child-resistant, automatically-closing cover that would have to be operated simultaneously with the main spout.
Have there been any organized attempts, e.g. petitions or legislation introduced, to get the government to reverse these regulations?