Obama Administration Proposes Historic Clean Cars Standards

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Nathan Willcox

Environment America

Washington, D.C. – The Obama administration today officially proposed new clean car standards that represent the biggest step the U.S. has ever taken to get off oil and tackle global warming. The standards would require cars and light trucks in model years 2017-2025 to meet a fleet-wide average fuel efficiency and global warming pollution standards equivalent to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

“The Obama administration’s clean cars proposal represents the biggest step ever taken to end America’s addiction to Big Oil,” said Jillian Hertzberg, Clean Vehicles Associate with Environment America.  “By making the cars and trucks of the future cleaner and more fuel efficient, these standards will reap big benefits for our environment, our health and our economy.”  

By 2030 the proposed standards would reduce annual global warming pollution by 280 million metric tons, roughly equivalent to shutting down 70 coal fired power plants for one year.  In addition, in the same amount of time, the standards would cut oil use by as much as 23 billion gallons per year – an amount equivalent to our imports from Saudi Arabia and Iraq in 2010. The standards would also save Americans nearly $45 billion at the gas pump each year, even after accounting for the cost of new technology, and would create nearly 500,000 new jobs. 

Moving forward, the Obama administration will conduct a 60-day public comment period and hold hearings to gauge public opinion of the new standards, before finalizing the standards next year.  

“For Americans who want to raise their voice in support of getting off oil, these clean car standards and this public comment period offer the best opportunity in years,” said Hertzberg.  “We look forward to helping demonstrate broad support for the strongest possible standards, and keeping them free of loopholes that would take away from the environmental and economic benefits.”