No issue is more important to California's air and climate regulators than ensuring that the state retains its ability to set tailpipe emission standards. Mary Nichols, the head of the Air Resources Board, has threatened to ban tailpipes.
Ending the talks means litigation will have to settle the conflict over the two standards: California and 12 other states continue to use the Obama-era standard of 36 mpg by 2025, while the administration's rule freezes standards at 2020, or 29 mpg.
Conventional thinking is that the auto industry, wanting to sell more fuel-gulping SUVs, are pushing for weaker fuel economy standards, but Hiroko Tabuchi, climate reporter for The New York Times, exposes Big Oil's stealth campaign.
California regulators have found that transportation emissions are the most difficult to reduce, unlike those from electricity generation. The state just took a major step by approving significant changes to its Low Carbon Fuel Standard program.
On Thursday, the U.S. DOT and U.S. EPA announced one of the Trump administration's most consequential rollbacks of environmental and efficiency regulations that will have a detrimental effect on climate change, air pollution, and oil consumption.
It's the U.S. EPA, under the new acting administrator, against two top officers in the Department of Transportation. Both agencies (along with California) determine fuel efficiency standards. Guess which wants to proceed cautiously in the rollback?
New York Times climate reporter, Brad Plumer, comments on California's landmark accomplishment in reducing emissions, observing that with the low-hanging electricity generation fruit picked, reducing transportation emissions will prove formidable.
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.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt had announced the rollback of greenhouse gas emission and fuel economy standards on April 2. While the auto industry supports the move, not all auto executives agreed.
A rollback of fuel economy standards carries huge financial consequences for the all-electric vehicle manufacturer that makes over $300 million annually by selling credits to auto manufacturers unable to achieve current fuel economy standards.
At stake are greenhouse gas emission standards for 2022-25 model year passenger vehicles. Relaxing these standards would likely doom efforts to reduce these emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 as required by 2016 state legislation.
On Tuesday, the Trump administration anticipates unraveling two signature Obama environmental regulations: fuel efficiency standards for model year 2022-2025 light-duty vehicles and beginning the undoing of the Clean Power Plan.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Transportation jointly issued final standards on Aug. 16 to reduce emissions and improve fuel economy for heavy duty trucks which currently average about six miles per gallon.
A new EPA report indicates that auto manufacturers will meet fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards relying largely on gasoline powered vehicles. Or will they? While likely to fall short of 54.5 mpg, they will come close enough.
An op-ed by Jostein Solheim, CEO of Ben & Jerry's, supports the second phase of greenhouse gas emissions and fuel efficiency standards for medium- and heavy-duty engines and vehicles that would become effective 2018.