California and Auto Industry Agree on Vehicle Emissions Standards

Normally having the California Air Resources Board and the auto industry in agreement on emissions standards would be enough, but the Trump administration wants to ensure that California plays no role in setting standards.

June 11, 2018, 9:00 AM PDT

By Irvin Dawid


Renewable Diesel

California Air Resources Board / Flickr

“Maybe in the first time in recorded history, California and the auto industry are mostly in agreement that standards on the books actually should be on the books, and California should have a place in implementing those standards,”  stated Mary Nichols, chair of the California Air Resources Board.

"Her comments come as the White House’s Office of Management and Budget is reviewing a proposal that would ease automobile efficiency standards, and people familiar with the matter have said it calls for revoking California’s unique authority to set its own limits," reports Mark Chediak for Bloomberg News on June 5.

That proposal would mean rescinding the California Greenhouse Gas Waiver last granted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency under the Obama administration in July 2009.

Auto industry to President Trump: Climate change is not a hoax

“Automakers remain committed to increasing fuel efficiency requirements, which yield everyday fuel savings for consumers while also reducing emissions -- because climate change is real and we have a continuing role in reducing greenhouse gases and improving fuel efficiency,” David Schwietert, executive vice president of federal government relations at the Alliance [of Automobile Manufacturers, the industry’s leading trade group], wrote in a May 3 letter, reported Ryan Beene for Bloomberg News on May 21.

California, under Attorney General Xavier Becerra, with 15 other states and the District of Columbia, filed a lawsuit on May 1 against the EPA over their rollbacks of vehicle greenhouse gas emission standards for model years 2022-2025.

Prolonged litigation is not what the auto industry wants, adds Chediak. "They’ve urged California and Trump administration officials to reach a deal that would adjust the standards in light of high light-truck sales and low fuel prices while still requiring annual mileage improvements."

Hat tip to Earth Justice Zero Emissions News.

Tuesday, June 5, 2018 in Bloomberg News

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