EPA calls for GHG emission standard revision

April 3, 2018
EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt says the current standards set in the Obama-era are "too stringent."

After an evaluation of light duty model year 2022-25 emissions standards set in the Obama-era, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt has called for a revision. 

Pruitt calls the current standards "too stringent" and based on outdated information gathered in 2017, which no longer matches today's assessments. The data consists of topics like gas prices and U.S. oil production, as well as consumer acceptance of advanced vehicle technology. 

"...the Administrator believes that the current GHG emission standards for MY 2022- 2025 light-duty vehicles presents challenges for auto manufacturers due to feasibility and practicability, raises potential concerns related to automobile safety, and results in significant additional costs on consumers, especially low-income consumers," Pruitt says according to a Mid-Term Evaluation (MTE) document. The MTE was a required process in the 2012 rulemaking. 

As a next step, the EPA will partner with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to develop a proposal of "more appropriate" standards, including GHG emissions and Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. 

Pruitt also notes, in an EPA release on the revision, that the EPA is still reexamming the Clean Air Act waiver granted to California, allowing the state to impose stricter standards for vehicle emissions. 

“Cooperative federalism doesn’t mean that one state can dictate standards for the rest of the country," Pruitt said in the release. "EPA will set a national standard for greenhouse gas emissions that allows auto manufacturers to make cars that people both want and can afford — while still expanding environmental and safety benefits of newer cars. It is in America's best interest to have a national standard, and we look forward to partnering with all states, including California, as we work to finalize that standard."

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