- WEB EXCLUSIVE
- PE COFFEEHAUS
Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson on Tuesday, Sept. 15, 2009, jointly proposed a rule establishing a national program to enforce standards for improving vehicle fuel economy and reducing greenhouse gases.
The program would provide federal vehicle fuel efficiency and emissions standard.
The proposed program covers model years 2012 through 2016, and includes miles per gallon requirements under NHTSA's Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards (CAFE) program, and the first-ever national emissions standards under the EPA's greenhouse gas program.
Model year 2016 vehicles would be required to meet an estimated combined average emission level of 250 grams of CO2 per mile. The overall light-duty vehicle fleet would reach 35.5 miles per gallon (mpg) in model year 2016, if all reductions were made through fuel economy improvements. If this occurs, Congress' fuel economy goal of 35.0 mpg by 2020 will be met four years ahead of schedule, the agencies said. This would surpass the CAFE law passed by Congress in 2007, which required an average fuel economy of 35 mpg in 2020. The 2016 vehicles also would have to meet an estimated combined average
NHTSA and the EPA said they expect automobile manufacturers would meet these proposed standards by improving engine efficiency, transmissions and tires, as well as increasing the use of start-stop technology and improvements in air conditioning systems. The agencies also anticipate that these standards would promote the more widespread use of advanced fuel-saving technologies like hybrid vehicles and clean diesel engines.
A 60-day comment period has been allotted for this action. The proposal and information about how to submit comments are at: www.epa.gov/otaq/climate/regulations.htm.