Skip to comments.Obama finalizes auto mileage mandate
Posted on 08/28/2012 10:54:05 AM PDT by jazusamo
The Obama administration issued final rules Tuesday that require a major boost in vehicle mileage standards, highlighting a clash with Mitt Romney as the GOP convention gets under way.
The Transportation Department and Environmental Protection Agency announced joint mileage and carbon emissions rules for model years 2017 through 2025 that will eventually force automakers to meet a standard equivalent to 54.5 miles per gallon.
Administration officials have made the rules a cornerstone of their energy agenda, noting that alongside earlier 2012-2016 rules, the mandate will eventually save consumers an estimated $1.7 trillion in fuel costs and save 12 billion barrels of oil.
These fuel standards represent the single most important step weve ever taken to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, President Obama said in a statement Tuesday, noting that by 2025 cars will get almost twice the mileage they provide today.
Itll strengthen our nation's energy security, it's good for middle class families and it will help create an economy built to last, Obama said.
The rules will provide an average fuel cost savings of more than $8,000 by 2025 over the lifetime of a vehicle, according to the White House. The administration estimates the auto mileage program will cut oil U.S. consumption by more than 2 million barrels a day by 2025, which the White House emphasized as a way to further curb reliance on OPEC.
A draft of the rules late last year estimated they would cost the auto industry a total of $157 billion to make cars and light trucks that comply with the tougher standards.
The rules drew a quick rebuke from the Romney campaign, which emphasized higher upfront costs for consumers buying vehicles that meet the new requirements.
Last year, in the draft of the proposal, the administration estimated that the 2017-2025 rules would add costs that reach an average of $2,000 per new vehicle in 2025.
Governor Romney opposes the extreme standards that President Obama has imposed, which will limit the choices available to American families. The President tells voters that his regulations will save them thousands of dollars at the pump, but always forgets to mention that the savings will be wiped out by having to pay thousands of dollars more upfront for unproven technology that they may not even want, Romney spokeswoman Andrea Saul said in a statement.
Environmental groups cheered the standards.
This is truly a watershed moment. Twenty years from now well be looking back on this as the day we chose innovation over stagnation, said Michelle Robinson, director of the clean vehicles program at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
But the announcement follows sharp criticism of the gas-mileage standards by some Capitol Hill Republicans, in particular House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.).
Issa has criticized the rules effect on vehicle costs, and he has suggested that the Obama administration used leverage from the bailouts of U.S. auto companies in 2008 and 2009 to convince them to back the new rules.
"Increased fuel efficiency is a goal all parties support but pursuing new standards that increase vehicle cost and decrease vehicle safety is dangerous for consumers and unacceptable from regulators," he said in a statement earlier in August.
The trade association for the U.S. auto industry, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, said Tuesday that new gas-mileage standards unveiled would level the playing field for car companies that have been dealing with differing state rules.
"The Auto Alliance has called for a single, national program because conflicting requirements from several regulatory bodies raise costs, ultimately taking money out of consumers' pockets and hurting sales," the group said in a statement. "We all want to get more fuel-efficient autos on our roads, and a single, national program with a strong midterm review helps us get closer to that shared goal."
However, the auto alliance added that the market's reaction to fuel-efficient cars is still to be determined.
"After years of billion-dollar investments by automakers, consumers have a lot of choice in fuel-efficient cars and light trucks, and automakers are working to sell these high-mileage vehicles in high volumes," the group said. "Compliance with higher fuel-economy standards is based on sales, not what we put on showroom floors."
Administration officials called the rules a landmark step in efforts to battle global warming.
Combined, the Administrations standards will cut greenhouse gas emissions from cars and light trucks in half by 2025, reducing emissions by 6 billion metric tons over the life of the program more than the total amount of carbon dioxide emitted by the United States in 2010, the White House said.
The rules include incentives for electric vehicles, hybrid systems in large pick-up trucks, and other technologies.
The White House said the standards are achievable but also allow a mid-term evaluation that could enable the Transportation Department and EPA to make adjustments.
Officials said the standards will boost industry innovation, and argue that a range of technologies are already available, such as advanced engines and transmissions, air conditioning improvements, weight reductions, better aerodynamics and other steps.
I really doubt that most mass transit including city buses ,attain high mileage per person moved.
The other has noted, they can do it but at what cost...
You have no idea what a cluster this is...
The other has noted, they can do it but at what cost...
You have no idea what a cluster this is...
GREAT, that will make up for about 20% of the 0bama and Pelosi banning of domestic oil exploration and the associated jobs that go along with it.
The tiny Honda hatchback of the late 1970s was RATED at 54mpg. Car was really best for commuting ,not family,AND being so small ,could not offer as much occupant safety.
Insane people think their wishes can be imposed on reality.
Why on earth would a congress ever turn over such wide regulatory powers to an agency? I don’t get it. The implication is that without further congressional approval, the EPA could mandate 100mpg.
> force automakers to meet a standard equivalent to 54.5 miles per gallon
Maybe his plan is to make all roads go downhill as with the country.
” Insane people think their wishes can be imposed on reality.”
Or just evil people.
I bet he can just order the tides to stop too
Yeah and forget buying a trailer, boat, snowmobiles, or anything that has to be towed.
These "compassionate" micromanaging haters of freedom are doing a wonderful job on the economy.
He is an evil bastard.
” it would cost the consumer a heck of a lot more than $2000 more per vehicle. “
I suppose they could retool, and make a carbon car......at a cost of an additional 10,000+ per car : )
” The EPA needs to be abolished or at least gutted to the bone and neutered as far as making regulations. “
I was a kid when this was formed, and even then, I knew it would grow into a monster.
They calculate that number in an odd way. Here is how it translates to real world numbers.
A President Romney could put a stop to this, correct?
Democrats think that they could mandate that a car be as safe and as advanced as the Space Shuttle and that it won’t effect the prices..... just another example of how economically ignorant they are.
LOL! Good one, Frank.
54.5 miles per gallon.
That is pretty amazing. I get 35 GPH now and I only have to fill up every other week or so. I have a Toyota.
The EPA needs to go away.
The conspiracist in me says that this is just another turn on the ratchet aimed toward getting the populace more and more angry and getting the Civil War they’ve been arming up for.
The realist in me says that somebody has made a political calculation and thinks that the populace will just roll over one more time like they always do.
Actually they know full well that it will cause the price to increase and the performance to decrease drastically. They WANT to price to rise so as to make it harder for individuals to buy automobiles - part of the move to eventually force everyone to use mass transit. Another nail in the coffin of the little bit of remaining freedom in the USA.
Until a mileage tax obliterates those savings.
“Laws of physics - BEND to my Imperial will!”
That's the much more likely scenario. Oh, folks will talk about it a lot on internet sites such as FR... but civil war? Not gonna happen.
I agree, and I think an argument could be made that would resonate with a freedom loving people. There was only one candidate I know of who made that argument, and it’s not Romney. I guess I still have hope, but just a little.
On to Hollywood. There should also be a mandate here of 50% use of "green" energy in film productions, including all transportation and travel. Only all organic, locally-produced food can be provided on the sets, unless food is standard vending machine fare, such as chips, candy and soda. Strict compliance with hours worked per person per day, or heavy, confiscatory fines.
On to tax-exempt charitable foundations. They should be mandated to distribute 20% of their wealth every year. This would include colleges and universities. Expenditures for fundraising cannot exceed 20% of the funds raised. Of course, there would be the obligatory requirement of a 50% use of "green" energy in their operations, including transportation and travel.
Sounds about right : )
Does anyone honestly think that the government is going to stand by and take a loss in the tax revenue they get from fuel and petroleum based products?
Now, me, I'm not that gullible. They'll raise taxes somewhere else and in a higher amount and consumers will find that 'their' estimated $1.7 trillion 'savings' isn't a 'savings' at all.
"Well Americans would have saved that much money if we hadn't had to raise taxes to make up for unexpected shortfalls." /future politician
And eventually that 12 billion barrels of oil will get tapped so it's not "saved" at all in the end.
This is like legislating that Pi = 3
It it long past time for CAFE to die.
Hydrogen powered cars would be good, but I’m sane enough to realize that it will take at least two decades to accomplish it.
They are issuing rules without using the legislative branch of the government? Just think, when the laws of physics are repealed, farmers will be driving their crops to market in carbon fiber trucks with bicycle tires.
Exactly! See my 37.
Next waivers for companies that give him money.
If that turkey is reelected I've no doubt that's what will happen.
“Most motorcycles don’t get this MPG”
But don’t discount the dishonest ‘MPGe’ rating, given to electric vehicles. The ‘e’ stands for equivalent, and the EPA uses trickery to calculate it. The Volt gets 98 mpge, for example. So, all an automaker has to do to meet new standards is....sell more Volts!.
Ths isn’t a law to increase fuel economy...its a law to foist more electric vehicles on the public.
And it also makes it particularly difficult to sell pickup trucks, which might be useful to people who want to start a small (non-union) business, etc.
Why? And How?