Trump team wants to roll back Obama-era mileage standards

Mindy Sparks
August 3, 2018

Calling a new Trump administration proposal to roll back fuel efficiency standards "insane", Pennsylvania's Attorney General Josh Shapiro said the state would join 18 others, including California, to legally challenge the sweeping plan to scrap Obama-era rules that set increasingly higher standards. 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". "More realistic standards can save lives while continuing to improve the environment". We value the public's input as we engage in this process in an open, transparent manner.

The administration said the freeze would boost US oil consumption by about 500,000 barrels of oil a day by the 2030s, and argued it would prevent up to 1,000 traffic fatalities per year by reducing the price of new vehicles and so prompting people to buy newer, safer vehicles more quickly.

They also propose to revoke California's authority under the Clean Air Act that has allowed the state to set rules more stringent than the federal ones limiting tailpipe greenhouse gas emissions as well as an electric-vehicle sales mandate.

The proposal argues that forcing automakers to reach a fleet-wide average of 51.4 miles per gallon by 2025, as the Obama administration required, would make vehicles more expensive and encourage people to stick to driving older, less-safe cars and trucks.

Fuel efficiency is unsafe for drivers, the Trump administration claims.

Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) on Thursday blasted President TrumpDonald John TrumpPro-Trump pastor: Trump is "the most pro-black" president I've ever seen Trump renews calls for interview with Mueller: report CNN's Acosta: Hannity is "injecting poison into the nation's political bloodstream" MORE for his administration's plan to strip California of its ability to determine its own vehicle regulations for greenhouse gas emissions.

The Trump administration is also trying to stop California and other states from being able to impose their own, stricter fuel-efficiency standards. "In short, the agencies propose to maintain one national standard - a standard that is set exclusively by the Federal government".

"With today's release of the administration's proposals, it's time for substantive negotiations to begin", Gloria Bergquist, a spokeswoman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, said in a statement to the New York Times.

Heidi King, deputy administrator of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, said the freeze would reduce highway deaths by 1,000 per year 'by reducing these barriers that prevent consumers from getting into the newer, safer, cleaner, more fuel-efficient cars'. Before a crowd of autoworkers assembled at a decommissioned auto factory, Trump said "we're going to work on the CAFE standards so you can make cars in America again". Securing America's Future Energy, a group dedicated to reducing independence on oil, noted that vehicle prices have actually fallen 3 percent since 2013, even as overall inflation increased 8 percent. Even better news is the decision to take California out of the driver's seat for setting CAFE standards for the entire country.

Environmental and cost impacts of freezing the rules are said to be minimal.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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