Administration Issues First-Ever Carbon Emissions Limit on Trucks

Clean Truck Standards Would Cut America's Fuel Costs, Pollution and Oil Dependence

WASHINGTON (October 25, 2010) -- Long-haul tractor trailers, city buses, delivery vehicles and work trucks are on their way to emitting less air pollution and running more efficiently based on the first-ever fuel efficiency and pollution-reduction standards for medium and heavy trucks to be jointly issued by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration today.

The standards include improvements for model years 2014 to 2018.

Medium and heavy trucks consume 20 percent of the oil used in the transportation sector and emit about 20 percent of transportation sector’s pollution yet represent only 4 percent of the vehicles on the roads. Trucking in the United States has increased by more than 50 percent since the early 1990s and today the nation depends on trucking for 70 percent of its shipping needs.

Following is a statement by Luke Tonachel, clean vehicles expert at the Natural Resources Defense Council:

“Heavy trucks and buses are the energy hogs of America’s roadways -- but they don’t have to be.  With more efficient engines, aerodynamic bodies and cleaner fuels, our nation’s truck fleets can run cleaner and cheaper. These new standards will save truck owners and consumers money, while creating jobs and reducing pollution in the process. 

“Every time the price of oil increases it sends shockwaves through the economy, with truck owners having to pay more for fuel, leading them to pass on higher shipping costs to the consumer.  Using less fuel will make those shockwaves less damaging to everyone’s wallet.

“President Obama did the right thing by encouraging the creation of these standards, but today’s proposal should be strengthened further to maximize the environmental, security and economic benefits. The National Academies have shown that cost-effective, clean-vehicle technologies exist that can go beyond the EPA and DOT proposal and more than double the pollution and fuel savings.”

For more background on this proposal, read Luke Tonachel’s blog: