The Trump administration is moving forward with a proposal to challenge part of California’s authority to set its own automobile gas mileage standards, a government official said Thursday, Sept. 5.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was preparing documentation for the White House to assist the administration set a single, less rigorous mileage standard enforceable nationwide, the official told The Associated Press.
For months, President Donald Trump has pushed to weaken Obama-era mileage standards nationwide and has targeted the decades-old power of California to set its own mileage standards as part of that effort.
The Trump administration has tried to ease or remove scores of environmental regulations that it regards as unnecessary and burdensome. California has sued the Trump administration 27 times on environmental matters alone, often as part of a group of states.
Breitbart News reported:
Dozens of conservatives leaders said that they support the Trump administration’s roll back of the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, which they contend will make cars both more affordable and safer.
Trump’s Environmental Protect Agency and the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration released a proposed rule making earlier in August to adjust the automobile fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards to give Americans access to safer, cleaner, and ultimately, more affordable cars.
The Obama-era standard mandated that automobiles sold by car companies have to reach 50 miles per gallon by 2025. Under Trump’s administration’s new proposal, cars and light-trucks would only have to average 37 mpg by 2026.
Estimates suggest that abolishing the CAFE standards of the Obama-era will reduce the price of an average new vehicle by $2,500, allowing Americans to buy safer vehicles that often emit less pollution and have a better gas mileage than their current car.
The conservatives said that, in contrast to California’s more onerous CAFE standards, the Trump administration’s rule struck a reasonable balance between reducing emissions and not harming the consumer. The Trump administration also proposed to eliminate California’s waver, which allows the state to impose stricter CAFE standards on their citizens.
Many in the automotive industry don’t like the far tougher Obama-era mileage standards and fear that they won’t be willing to satisfy them, as U.S. customers continue to shift away from sedans to less efficient trucks and SUVs. Most automakers support growing mileage demands at a reduced pace than specified under President Barack Obama. They also want one U.S. standard to avoid having to engineer separate vehicles for California and the states that follow its rules.
Includes reporting from The Associated Press