Published: Fri, March 17, 2017
Global | By Doris Richards

California Lawmakers Blast Trump's Move To Roll Back Car Pollution Standards

California Lawmakers Blast Trump's Move To Roll Back Car Pollution Standards

On the same day that President Trump announced a review of federal vehicle emissions standards, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced he was leading a coalition of attorneys general asking him to stop the review.

Trump has widely criticized USA automakers for manufacturing cars overseas, which he claimed led to loss of factories and jobs.

Rolling back the efficiency standards which Obama signed a short while before stepping down from office will result in major savings for automakers.

"We applaud the Administration's decision to reinstate the data-driven review of the 2022-2025 standards", Auto Alliance CEO Mitch Bainwol said in a statement.

Analysts said that while reopening the review would create an opportunity to relax the planned standards, it did not necessarily mean the 2012 deal would be weakened.

"The assault on the American auto industry is over", Trump said in a speech that aroused cheers from the audience of union workers.

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The White House official acknowledged that the administration could face legal challenges in 2018 if it chose to go another course, particularly with California's vow to push through tough standards.

Automakers have signalled they want the government to give manufacturers more credit toward achieving fuel efficiency targets for technologies such as "stop-start" systems that shut down a car's engine at a traffic light.

Here, vehicles refuel at a roadside gas station in New Mexico. All of the above states have adopted "the California standard" for emissions, which are stricter than even the Obama administration's requirements. In January, shortly before Trump took office, Obama's Environmental Protection Agency locked that goal in place in a move that disappointed vehicle manufacturers. We are going to be fair.

"We are going to cancel that executive action, we are going to restore the originally-scheduled midterm review", Trump said. The rules affect a sizable contributor to America's greenhouse gas emissions: In 2014, cars, SUVs, pickup trucks, and minivans were responsible for 20 percent of the carbon dioxide the United States put into the air, according to the EPA. Trump views the regulations as an impediment to economic growth. The EPA estimates the current standards will cost $875 per vehicle, while a study commissioned by the auto industry estimates it at $1,249 per vehicle by 2025.

On a related topic, California will not see its Clean Air Act waiver, which allows it to set potentially higher vehicle standards than the federal government, revoked "right now", the official said. The group's request came last month, after the confirmation of Scott Pruitt as EPA administrator.

After one participant in the meetings mentioned environmental concerns, Mr Trump said he agreed but did not want an "extra thimbleful of fuel" to get in the way of growth.

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