EPA to Overhaul Vehicle Fuel Efficiency Standards

Aug. 23, 2021

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) "is proposing to set robust federal greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards for passenger cars and light trucks to secure pollution reductions through model year 2026."

The proposal, which revises standards set by the Trump administration, also outlines the agency’s plans "to initiate a subsequent rulemaking to set standards for model year 2027 and beyond" in order to accelerate "the transition of the light-duty vehicle fleet toward a zero emissions future.  

"In addition, EPA is announcing plans to update air pollution standards for heavy-duty vehicles."

The EPA's proposal for light vehicles "would achieve significant GHG and other pollution reductions and related public health and welfare benefits, while providing drivers with lower operating costs resulting from significant fuel savings," according to agency officials.

The proposal would establish more stringent standards for each model year, starting in 2023.

EPA estimates that this will result in 2.2 billion tons of avoided carbon dioxide emissions through 2050.

"American drivers would save between $120 to $250 billion in fuel costs through 2050."

The EPA says its analysis shows that automobile manufacturers "would be able to comply with these stronger standards using technology that is already used in today’s vehicles including technologies that improve efficiency of internal combustion vehicles, with modest increases in the numbers of electric vehicles entering the fleet. These standards provide adequate lead time for manufacturers to comply with reasonable costs." 

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