Obama administration to propose new fuel efficiency, emissions requirements

Article by Christian Andrei, on September 29, 2010

Sometime this week, the Obama administration will propose new fuel efficiency and emissions requirements for cars and light trucks for model years 2017 and beyond. The White House budget office is currently reviewing this plan, which is the focus of President Barack Obama's energy agenda that’s inclined towards cutting oil imports. It’s due on Thursday, but it’s possible for it to be released sooner.

The major environmental groups have been urging the administration to set a target of 60 miles per gallon by 2025; however, officials have called this to be unlikely.

According to environmental and auto industry experts, the regulators will propose a yearly average increase ranging from 3% to 6%. To achieve the 60 mpg figure, there has to be a roughly 6% annual improvement.

These experts also said that the administration is trying not to be too rigid but it’s expected to ask for more aggressive gains than industry is used to. Figures show that US passenger vehicles emit about 20% of the nation's carbon emissions and consume about 44% of its oil.

The green groups are asking the US to cut oil dependence by almost 50 billion gallons annually and carbon pollution more than 500 metric tons per year by 2030.

The standards that were implemented last year compel carmakers to achieve 35.5 mpg by 2016, a 42% increase from current levels. A letter was sent by the Consumer Federation of America, along with leading environmental and scientific groups, to President Obama last week, asking his administration to increase vehicle fuel efficiency requirements to 60 mpg by 2025. [via autonews - sub. required]

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