Trump Calls for Review of 2025 CAFE Standards

Posted March 17, 2017

The plan, as originally announced by the Obama administration in 2012, would have required automakers to achieve Corporate Average Fuel Economy of 54.5 miles per gallon by the year 2025. But the rules couldn't take effect until the US government granted California a waiver under the federal Clean Air Act to impose standards that exceeded national standards. "They don't like us", Trump said.

The head of Canada's largest private-sector union said Thursday he would fight any attempt to roll back environmentally friendly regulations in the auto industry following Trump's announcement.

If Trump wants to protect auto industry jobs, he should look at robot automation instead.

California, long a Democratic and environment-friendly state, filed a motion to block a lawsuit brought by automakers that are seeking to challenge the current EPA requirements. The actions will allow the two states to defend the tougher emissions standards in court.

"Let us put American workers, American families and American dreams first once again", he said, hitting familiar campaign themes.

Many in the industry saw that announcement, coming so far ahead of the deadline, as a move by the outgoing administration to lock in fuel economy and emissions rules before Trump took office.

The fewer regulations will be an effort to revitalize the industry that Trump says is being crushed. His EPA chief, Pruitt, has said he doesn't believe carbon dioxide is a primary contributor to global warming, putting him at odds with Obama's EPA and mainstream climate science.

The alliance sent a letter last month to the agency's new administrator, Scott Pruitt, where it described the order as "riddled with indefensible assumptions, inadequate analysis and a failure to engage with contrary evidence".

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The U.S. Department of Transportation and Environmental Protection Agency issued a notice saying it plans to review greenhouse gas standards for cars and light trucks sold between 2022 and 2025.

A year ago the administration speedily conducted that review, coming up with a final decision that the industry would easily be able to meet the stricter standards. A decision is not due until April 2018. "The pathway to weakening the standards - that path goes through California".

Trump in the White House and a fossil fuel ally at the helm of the EPA may have been seen as openings to scrap the stricter standards.

That means California would end up setting national policy.

"The assault on the American auto industry is over", he declared. This would do more than invite legal action: It would create a brutal battle between the president and the state of California. Gov. He spoke on condition of anonymity even though Trump has criticized the use of unnamed sources.

"We must embrace a new economic model, let's call it the American model", Trump says to a cheering crowd.

The feds have some leverage: A new waiver will be needed in 2025. Government set emission standards ensures the playing field is leveled - making cars fuel efficient has to be built into the cost for everyone selling cars in America.