Trump proposes capping fuel economy standards at 2020 level

03 August, 2018, 18:14 | Author: Rosalie Gross
  • Make Cars Great Again

And California Attorney General Xavier Becrra also expressed his strong opposition to the Trump Administration's proposal to weaken national greenhouse gas emission and fuel efficiency regulations at the expense of public health and the environment.

But consumer groups and experts said the messaging around the proposal is deceptive, completely ignoring the cost savings on gas in more efficient cars - especially if gas prices increase.

Transport has become the largest sector source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S., as cheap fuel has encouraged Americans to buy larger vehicles such as SUVs.

The administration also wants to revoke the authority of California and other states to set their own, stricter mileage standards - independent of federal ones.

In 2012, former President Barack Obama announced that the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency had released guidelines that would work to "cut greenhouse gas emissions from cars and light trucks in half by 2025, reducing emissions by 6 billion metric tons over the life of the program". That would allow more people to buy cars with enhanced safety features, the government said.

"The source of the safety benefits from the analysis for this proposed rule is getting folks into affordable, more fuel-efficient, cleaner, safer cars", King told reporters.

The EPA contended in a press release on Thursday that the current Obama-era gas mileage standards have been a factor in the rising cost of cars to an average of $35,000, which makes purchasing a new vehicle unaffordable for many Americans.

One of the administration's arguments against the 2012 rule is that the cheapest ways for auto makers to achieve fuel efficiency already have been implemented.

"This has to be absolutely one of the most harmful and dumbest actions that the EPA has taken", said Healey of MA, one of the attorneys general from 19 states and the District of Columbia objecting to the change. Yet for President Donald Trump, who's prioritized eliminating regulations, the auto rules represent a grand prize. "The administration's announcement that it will relax future fuel economy (CAFE) standards is good news for consumers", Myron Ebell, director of the Competitive Enterprise Institute's Center for Energy and Environment, said in a statement.

Other states that joined in the lawsuit were: Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia and the District of Columbia. The administration estimates that halting more ambitious fuel efficiency targets would save Americans thousands of dollars on every new vehicle purchased and avoid 1,000 road deaths a year. California and 18 other states that follow the same guidelines have promised to sue.

They want to freeze them at the proposed 2020 level. He assured them he would, ordering his EPA chief and Transportation secretary to try to broker a deal with California. But any plans to freeze clean air rules and strip California of its power to set its own rules is drawing fire from members of both parties. "We urge California and the federal government to find a common sense solution that sets continued increases in vehicle efficiency standards while also meeting the needs of America's drivers". Now they're only about one-third, with less-efficient trucks and SUVS making up the rest.

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