ibusinesslines.com August 20, 2018

Trump Administration Rolls Back Fuel Economy Standards For Cars

03 August 2018, 06:54 | Justin Tyler

Trump Administration Aims to Freeze Fuel Standards, End Tougher California Rules

Trump's EPA formally launches attack on California's fuel-economy rules

The Obama standards called for vehicles to get around 50 miles to the gallon by the year 2025.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) tweeted soon after the White House announced the policy change that she saw this as proof that the Trump administration was prioritizing "lining the pockets of big oil over protecting our right to breathe clean air".

The proportion of passengers killed in cars that are older than 18 years is nearly double that of cars that are newer than three years, according to a recent National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) study.

"It's a proposal that attacks the states' right to protect people from risky pollution, one that no one -- not the American public, not the states, not even most automakers -- really wants, and one that's being presented to the public under the false and easily discredited guise of improving public safety", the statement continued. Whereas under the previous rules enacted in 2012, CAFE targets would ramp up every year, the new proposal intends to keep the 2020 numbers in place through 2026.

Eighteen states - including New York, New Jersey and California - sued the Trump administration in May to stop it from rolling back the fuel standards, arguing that they should be able to develop regulations to curb pollution. "The Trump administration has launched a brazen attack, no matter how it is cloaked, on our nation's clean auto standards", Becerra said on Twitter.

"The reporting that we're reversing Obama-era fuel efficiency standards and pre-empting the tougher California standard is simply false", Sanders said.

Reforming Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards is a huge tax cut for American auto buyers, up to a $7,200 per vehicle. He suggested states rights conservatives are hypocrites for approving the plan. The plunge in natural gas prices and other market forces have steadily lowered the climate impact of utilities, but transportation is proving more stubborn.

The greatest increase in greenhouse gas emissions would happen in the 2030s because electric cars will grow significantly by the 2040s, the Energy Innovation analysis found.

The administration also contends that hiking US oil consumption by 2 to 3 percent over forecast levels would have a minimal impact on the environment, boosting global average temperature by just "3/1000th of a degree Celsius by 2100".

The administration's announcement that it will relax future fuel economy (CAFE) standards is good news for consumers.

Environmental groups are already expressing their outrage over the plan.

A lower emission standard would make it easier for them to make the vehicles more drivers want.

All of this could be somewhat mitigated if California can set stronger standards; at the moment, the state and federal standard are the same.

Pollution from cars, trucks and other on-road vehicles is the California's single-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions, according to state data.

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