WASHINGTON (April 1, 2010) – The Environmental Protection Agency finalized vehicle emission standards today that will make millions of new cars, SUVs, minivans and pick-up trucks use fuel more efficiently. These standards will reduce greenhouse gases, save consumers billions at the gas pump and reduce our national reliance on foreign oil, according to the Natural Resources Defense Council.
These federal EPA emission standards, issued in conjunction with the Department of Transportation fuel economy standards, will bring the benefits of California’s landmark clean car standards to the entire nation. The California standards, set in 2004, were adopted by 13 other states and the District of Columbia. In an historic agreement announced in the Rose Garden in May 2009, President Obama brought the states, the auto makers, labor unions, and the environmental community together to extend the benefits of those standards nationwide and end a protracted legal battle.
The Natural Resources Defense Council played a key role in passing California’s clean car legislation, developing its standards, defending them in court, and working out the clean car agreement announced last May.
NRDC estimates that the new standards will save consumers $65 billion at the pump in 2020 by cutting oil consumption by 1.3 million barrels of oil a day, while also slashing global warming pollution by more than 220 million metric tons in 2020.
The following is a statement by Roland Hwang, Transportation Program Director at the Natural Resources Defense Council:
“A year ago, President Obama said his administration would enact better clean car standards for our country and, today, they made it a reality. These historic standards will help consumers, automakers, and the planet. Clean, efficient cars will put us on the road to safely reducing our dangerous dependency on foreign oil.
“These national emission standards represent a consensus among the state and federal governments, the automakers, the environmental community, and labor unions on effective action under the Clean Air Act to curb dangerous global warming pollution.
“By completing these rules, the Obama Administration is putting our country on the road to creating thousands of clean energy jobs and cutting our dangerous dependency on oil.
“We look forward to working with the automakers, the unions, the administration, and the states on future standards that will ensure that the United States remains a leader in clean car technologies.”