EPA Proposes Freezing Fuel Economy Standards At 35 MPG Until 2026

04 August, 2018, 02:11 | Author: Dwayne Harmon
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A lower emission standard would make it easier for them to make the vehicles more drivers want.

'I've had it with the so-called pro-business conservatives who ignore what actual industry leaders say is best for business'.

Schwarzenegger and Trump have repeatedly criticized each other over the years, including during Trump's presidency.

The Trump administration Thursday pushed ahead with plans to unravel the federal government's most effective action to fight climate change - aggressive fuel economy standards aimed at getting the nation's cars and trucks to average more than 50 miles per gallon by 2025.

President Donald Trump's proposal also undercuts California's authority to set its own stricter emissions rules for the state. "The Trump administration has chose to force America's drivers to spend more at the gas pump, burn millions more barrels of oil, and put us on a path to greater harm from climate change". The administration's assertion that lighter, more fuel efficient cars are more risky has been disputed by transport experts.

Under the current standards, set in a deal with automakers in 2012, cars were supposed to get significantly cleaner between 2022 and 2025, ending up at an average of around 54 miles per gallon and saving drivers gas costs and cutting pollution.

Calif. Gov. Jerry Brown responded swiftly.

"There are compelling reasons for a new rulemaking on fuel economy standards for 2021-2026", said Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

"The law requires fuel economy standards in order to save fuel, and yet this proposal does just the exact opposite", said Shannon Baker-Branstetter, senior policy counsel for Consumers Union, the advocacy arm of Consumer Reports. That argument remained on the EPA's website Thursday. It also claims that lower new auto prices would mean more folks buying them and moving out of older, less safe cars.

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As EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler explained, "Our proposal aims to strike the right regulatory balance based on the most recent information and create a 50-state solution that will enable more Americans to afford newer, safer vehicles that pollute less".

But private transportation experts say there are so many factors involved that the 1,000 lives saved figure is questionable.

The proposal also took a swipe at California, accusing the state of focusing "disproportionately" on greenhouse gas emissions at the expense of overall air quality.

"The effect of unreasonable fuel economy and Carbon dioxide standards: Increased vehicle prices keep consumers in older, dirtier, and less safe vehicles", the EPA said in its proposal.

The Obama administration had planned to keep toughening fuel requirements through 2026, saying those and other regulations on vehicles would save 40,000 lives annually through cleaner air.

It's costly for companies to design and build vehicles for California and states that follow its rules, and a different set for the rest of the country.

Today's cars contain so many computers and must be manufactured to produce so much horsepower out of as little motor as possible that they have become nothing more than rolling computers on the brink of failure.

The proposal unveiled on Thursday is one of several under consideration, but is the favoured option, officials said.

The auto industry, which has often baulked at the higher costs associated with the tougher U.S. standards, strongly backs a national standard that could be negotiated between Washington and California. "Safety is up, fuel economy is up and sales are up".

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