Environment America and a dozen other environmental, conservation and consumer groups delivered tens of thousands of petitions to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt today in support of clean cars. These included comments from 1,100 health professionals and 550 small businesses urging Administrator Pruitt to defend and strengthen the clean car standards for vehicle efficiency and the corporate average fuel economy standards to cut carbon emissions and protect health.
The outpouring of public support from citizens, health experts and businesses came in response to the Trump administration’s reopening of the EPA’s midterm evaluation on clean car standards. The process withdraws the previously released final determination on EPA’s vehicle emission standards for 2022-2025 and expands the time period under consideration to 2021-2025. In response, Jennie Olson, Environmental Defense Fellow at Environment America, issued the following statement:
“We need Clean Car Standards to protect our health and environment. Reducing pollution will help curb the effects of climate change, and at the same time, it will spur innovation and investment in clean cars technology, growing our economy and creating new opportunities. That’s why 1,100 health professionals and 550 small business owners support these standards as well. Let’s move forward, not back.”
The comments are part of a drumbeat of public support for the standards. In a letter submitted to the Environmental Protection Agency earlier this year, Environment America urged the EPA not to roll back the standards, which have already achieved significant progress in cleaning up pollution from cars. During the EPA’s original midterm evaluation, Environment America also submitted more than 40,000 grassroots comments in support of strong vehicle standards.
The clean car standards alone will eliminate six billion metric tons of global warming pollution. By 2030, these clean cars standards will reduce projected oil consumption by 2.4 million barrels of oil per day— more than the United States imports from the Middle East and Venezuela combined, while saving consumers $1.7 trillion at the pump. Furthermore, the EPA and the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration’s joint report in July showed that auto companies have the technology to clean up our cars, with multiple vehicles already exceeding the standards.
“It’s clear that we can and must do more to clean up our cars and trucks, for our health and the environment,” Olson concluded. “The EPA should strengthen these highly effective protections, not roll them back.”