Following the official announcement this morning that the new 2025 Corporate Average Fuel Economy standard would be set at 54.5 miles per gallon, our email box overflowed with something we rarely see: near-unanimous support. Everyone from the automakers to the Union of Concerned Scientists, from the United Auto Workers to the American people (through a study released today by the Pew Environment Group) seem to agree: 54.5 mpg is the right fuel economy target. Sure, some of the groups would have been happier with the previously bandied-about 62 mpg or even 56.2 mpg, but almost everyone is putting on a happy face today.

Surrounding the President as he made the announcement were the heads of many automakers, including Dan Akerson (GM), Alan Mulally (Ford), Sergio Marchionne (Chrysler), John Krafcik (Hyundai Motor America), Jim Lentz (Toyota Motors Sales USA) and more. The OEMs brought a bevy of fuel-efficient vehicles, too, including plug-ins like the Nissan Leaf and the Chevrolet Volt, a bunch of hybrids couple of a big trucks that aren't the gas guzzlers of yesteryear: a Ford F-150 with EcoBoost and a Dodge Ram 4x4 SLT.

Of course, we're sure there will be continued contention over what is the best fuel economy goal for the United States – the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, for example, says that the "proposal does not drive advanced technology to its maximum potential," and warns that it could be watered down even further – but, for now, pretty much everyone appears to be on the same page. Even California, which could (and has, in the past) gone its own way with fuel economy standards because of the Clean Air Act, has given its approval to 54.5. As our friend Jim Motavalli wrote in BNET yesterday, President Obama, "seems to have crafted a fairly good compromise that nobody actively hates." The behind-the-scenes negotiations must have been interesting to watch, eh?
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President Obama Announces Historic 54.5 mpg Fuel Efficiency Standard
Consumers will save $1.7 trillion at the pump, $8K per vehicle by 2025


WASHINGTON, DC – President Obama today announced a historic agreement with thirteen major automakers to pursue the next phase in the Administration's national vehicle program, increasing fuel economy to 54.5 miles per gallon for cars and light-duty trucks by Model Year 2025. The President was joined by Ford, GM, Chrysler, BMW, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar/Land Rover, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota and Volvo – which together account for over 90% of all vehicles sold in the United States – as well as the United Auto Workers (UAW), and the State of California, who were integral to developing this agreement.

"This agreement on fuel standards represents the single most important step we've ever taken as a nation to reduce our dependence on foreign oil," said President Obama. "Most of the companies here today were part of an agreement we reached two years ago to raise the fuel efficiency of their cars over the next five years. We've set an aggressive target and the companies are stepping up to the plate. By 2025, the average fuel economy of their vehicles will nearly double to almost 55 miles per gallon."

Building on the Obama administration's agreement for Model Years 2012-2016 vehicles, which will raise fuel efficiency to 35.5 mpg and begin saving families money at the pump this year, the next round of standards will require performance equivalent to 54.5 mpg or 163 grams/ mile of CO2 for cars and light-duty trucks by Model Year 2025. Achieving the goals of this historic agreement will rely on innovative technologies and manufacturing that will spur economic growth and create high-quality domestic jobs in cutting edge industries across America.

These programs, combined with the model year 2011 light truck standard, represent the first meaningful update to fuel efficiency standards in three decades and span Model Years 2011 to 2025. Together, they will save American families $1.7 trillion dollars in fuel costs, and by 2025 result in an average fuel savings of over $8,000 per vehicle. Additionally, these programs will dramatically cut the oil we consume, saving a total of 12 billion barrels of oil, and by 2025 reduce oil consumption by 2.2 million barrels a day – as much as half of the oil we import from OPEC every day.

The standards also curb carbon pollution, cutting more than 6 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas over the life of the program – more than the amount of carbon dioxide emitted by the United States last year. The oil savings, consumer, and environmental benefits of this comprehensive program are detailed in a new report entitled Driving Efficiency: Cutting Costs for Families at the Pump and Slashing Dependence on Oil, which the Administration released today.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) have worked closely with auto manufacturers, the state of California, environmental groups, and other stakeholders for several months to ensure these standards are achievable, cost-effective and preserve consumer choice. The program would increase the stringency of standards for passenger cars by an average of five percent each year. The stringency of standards for pick-ups and other light-duty trucks would increase an average of 3.5 percent annually for the first five model years and an average of five percent annually for the last four model years of the program, to account for the unique challenges associated with this class of vehicles.

"These standards will help spur economic growth, protect the environment, and strengthen our national security by reducing America's dependence on foreign oil," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "Working together, we are setting the stage for a new generation of clean vehicles."

"This is another important step toward saving money for drivers, breaking our dependence on imported oil and cleaning up the air we breathe," said EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson. "American consumers are calling for cleaner cars that won't pollute their air or break their budgets at the gas pump, and our innovative American automakers are responding with plans for some of the most fuel efficient vehicles in our history."

A national policy on fuel economy standards and greenhouse gas emissions provides regulatory certainty and flexibility that reduces the cost of compliance for auto manufacturers while addressing oil consumption and harmful air pollution. Consumers will continue to have access to a diverse fleet and can purchase the vehicle that best suits their needs.

EPA and NHTSA are developing a joint proposed rulemaking, which will include full details on the proposed program and supporting analyses, including the costs and benefits of the proposal and its effects on the economy, auto manufacturers, and consumers. After the proposed rules are published in the Federal Register, there will be an opportunity for public comment and public hearings. The agencies plan to issue a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking by the end of September 2011. California plans on adopting its proposed rule in the same time frame as the federal proposal.
Given the long time frame at issue in setting standards for MY2022-2025 light-duty vehicles, EPA and NHTSA intend to propose a comprehensive mid-term evaluation. Consistent with the agencies' commitment to maintaining a single national framework for vehicle GHG and fuel economy regulation, the agencies will conduct the mid-term evaluation in close coordination with California.

In achieving the level of standards described above for the 2017-2025 program, the agencies expect automakers' use of advanced technologies to be an important element of transforming the vehicle fleet. The agencies are considering a number of incentive programs to encourage early adoption and introduction into the marketplace of advanced technologies that represent "game changing" performance improvements, including:

Incentives for electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, and fuel cells vehicles;
Incentives for advanced technology packages for large pickups, such as hybridization and other performance-based strategies;
Credits for technologies with potential to achieve real-world CO2 reductions and fuel economy improvements that are not captured by the standards test procedures.

In addition, EPA plans to propose provisions for:
Credits for improvements in air conditioning (A/C) systems, both for efficiency improvements and for use of alternative, lower global warming potential refrigerant;
Treatment of compressed natural gas (CNG);
Continued credit banking and trading, including a one-time carry-forward of unused MY 2010-2016 credits through MY 2021.


UCS APPLAUDS OBAMA ADMINISTRATION AGREEMENT ON FUEL EFFICIENCY & AUTO POLLUTION STANDARDS

STATEMENT BY MICHELLE ROBINSON, DIRECTOR, UNION OF CONCERNED SCIENTISTS' CLEAN VEHICLES PROGRAM

WASHINGTON (July 29, 2011) –The Obama administration today unveiled an agreement with major automakers and the state of California on a framework to strengthen the nation's fuel efficiency and auto pollution standards for new cars and light trucks. This proposal, which will apply to vehicles sold in model years 2017 to 2025, will set a global warming pollution standard of 163 grams per mile by 2025, the equivalent of 54.5 miles per gallon (mpg) if met exclusively with fuel efficiency improvements, or a Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standard of 48-49 mpg assuming full use of air conditioning improvements. That would translate to a 2030 window sticker of about 36 mpg, up from 21 mpg today.

These standards build on the successful National Program for model years 2012 to 2016, which allows automakers to build a single national fleet to comply with Clean Air Act standards from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the California Air Resources Board (CARB), as well as Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards administered by the Department of Transportation (DOT).

The following is a statement from Michelle Robinson, director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' Clean Vehicles program:

"These standards will give our cars and trucks a technology makeover. We will still see the same types of vehicles on the road, but they will be dramatically more fuel efficient, cost less to operate, and produce less pollution. For the second time, President Obama has brought together the auto industry, the states, and other stakeholders to support strong standards that will protect consumers from high gas prices, curb global warming pollution, cut our oil dependence, and create innovative jobs in the American auto industry. We applaud the Obama administration and California for moving forward with these important standards.

"The technology exists to make any car, truck or SUV cleaner and more fuel efficient, and these standards will unleash innovation in the auto industry.

"This agreement is an important step forward, but there are still parts of the plan that need to be resolved. If they aren't implemented correctly, they could turn into loopholes. If automakers can meet the standards with accounting tricks instead of using better technology, the program's overall benefits would be eroded. We look forward to working with the administration and different stakeholders to evaluate and revise these standards so they produce the best vehicles possible for consumers, the auto industry, the country and the planet."

Based on UCS's current understanding of the proposal and assuming no loopholes, UCS experts anticipate that the standards for model years 2017 to 2025 will deliver the following benefits in 2030 in addition to the benefits from the first round of standards:

Cut oil consumption by as much as 1.5 million barrels per day -- 23 billion gallons of gasoline annually -- by 2030. That is equivalent to U.S. imports from Saudi Arabia and Iraq in 2010.
Cut carbon pollution by as much as 280 million metric tons (MMT) in 2030, which is equivalent to shutting down 72 coal-fired power plants.
Lower fuel expenditures at the pump by over $80 billion in 2030 -- even after paying for the cost of the necessary technology, consumers will still clear $50 billion in savings that year alone.

Obama Administration, Auto Industry in Sync with Americans' Opinion on Fuel Economy
Pew Clean Energy Program poll finds strong support for ambitious standards


WASHINGTON (July 28, 2011)-Against a backdrop of sharp differences on a variety of current public policy issues, new polling by the Pew Clean Energy Program demonstrates strong support from American voters for immediate action on vehicle fuel economy.

In a national poll* conducted for Pew by the bipartisan polling team The Mellman Group, Inc. and Public Opinion Strategies between July 8-12, 2011, 91 percent of Americans agree that dependence on foreign oil is a "very serious" or "somewhat serious" threat to U.S. security, with 61 percent indicating it is a "very serious" threat. These views cut across demographic and partisan lines, with 65 percent of Republicans, 57 percent of Democrats and 62 percent of independents identifying dependence on foreign oil as a "very serious threat" to national security.

The polling results reinforce news reports of an ambitious proposed interim fuel economy rule agreement reached by the Obama administration, the auto industry and other stakeholders to improve fuel efficiency for cars and light-duty trucks in model years 2017-2025. The proposed standard is to be announced Friday, July 29, 2011.

The survey found 82 percent of respondents support an increased fuel efficiency standard of 56 miles per gallon (mpg) by 2025, with 68 percent who "favor strongly." Overwhelming majorities in every demographic subgroup support increased fuel efficiency to 56 mpg, including 70 percent of Republicans, 87 percent of Democrats and 88 percent of independents.

Voters across all regions also backed increasing fuel economy to 56 mpg, with 80 percent in the Northeast, 85 percent in the Midwest, 77 percent in the South and 86 percent in the West. Further, 92 percent of Americans believe it is either "very important" (69 percent) or "somewhat important" (23 percent) for the United States to take action now to increase fuel efficiency.

"This proposed rule will give Americans what they want," said Phyllis Cuttino, director of the Pew Clean Energy Program. "It will reduce our dependence on foreign oil, save consumers money at the pump, spur technological innovation, create jobs in the automobile industry and reduce harmful pollution."

"Just as they did in 2009, the administration, the auto industry and other stakeholders have come together and agreed to a higher mpg standard-this time 54.5 mpg-that will both serve the interest of the public and provide market certainty for industry," Cuttino said. "We look forward to seeing the details of the proposed rule. As it is finalized over the coming months, the administration must ensure that it is not further watered down."

*This analysis represents the findings of a national survey of 1,000 likely 2012 general election voters. Interviews were conducted by telephone July 8-12, 2011, using a national registration-based sample. Respondents were screened for being likely voters. The margin of error for this survey is +/-3.1 percent at the 95 percent level of confidence. The margin of error is higher for subgroups.

The Pew Environment Group is the conservation arm of The Pew Charitable Trusts, a nongovernmental organization that works globally to establish pragmatic, science-based policies that protect our oceans, preserve our wildlands and promote clean energy. www.PewEnvironment.org/CleanEnergy.

BlueGreen Alliance and Labor, Environmental Partners Support Administration's New Fuel Efficiency and Auto Pollution Standards

The BlueGreen Alliance (BGA) and its partners support President Obama's proposal of a stronger fuel efficiency standard of 54.5 miles per gallon as an important step towards building a strong national program for light duty vehicles sold in model years 2017-2025.

"The UAW is pleased to join our BGA partners in supporting this framework agreement," said United Auto Workers President Bob King. "We congratulate and thank President Obama and his administration for bringing all the stakeholders together in a compromise that moves the industry forward."

"After decades of inaction and stagnation, President Obama has ensured 15 years of continuous progress to help cut our dangerous addiction to oil, create American jobs, save families money at the pump, curb dangerous pollution and tackle climate disruption," said Michael Brune, Executive Director of the Sierra Club. "It is critical that the Administration put technology to work to ensure the strongest final standards possible for the greatest benefits to American families and workers."

"This is a strong step toward reducing America's dependence on oil, curbing climate change and protecting our health," said Peter Lehner, Executive Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council. "While Congress is tied up in ideological gridlock on the debt limit, the president, the auto companies, the UAW, environmentalists and clean car states have, once again, shown what governing is and what can be accomplished by constructive compromise."

"Whether they drive a compact car or a large pickup truck, all Americans deserve to see much greater fuel efficiency - and savings - in their next vehicle," said Larry Schweiger, President and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation. "With technology that delivers efficiency and performance together, these standards ensure that increasingly the vehicles we rely on to work in the outdoors will work for the outdoors, and for America".

According to Driving Growth, a joint report by the United Autoworkers, Natural Resources Defense Council, and Center for American Progress, up to 150,000 additional American jobs could be created by reaching 40 miles per gallon through 2020.

"Innovative programs such as the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing loans have already leveraged $8 billion in investment into nearly 40,000 auto industry jobs in the U.S.," said King. "Federal policies designed to attract manufacturing investment will keep America on a level playing field with other nations that are moving aggressively to boost green auto technology."

"This decision shows appropriate faith in American technological abilities and should equip us to compete for market share, jobs and the cutting edge of innovation," said Kevin Knobloch, President of the Union of Concerned Scientists. "Our hope is that the auto companies will be bullish about meeting and exceeding these standards ahead of schedule, and thus show the country and the world what we are made of."

"As America's working families continue to struggle with high gas prices and the fragile economic recovery, this is the right step to take at the right time to help save consumers money at the gas pump and create new American jobs," said David Foster, Executive Director of the BlueGreen Alliance. "America sends an estimated $1 billion daily to foreign countries to pay for oil. This new standard proposed by President Obama will result in keeping more of those dollars here in the United States, set the stage for weaning America off foreign oil addiction for good, and will result in the long-term reductions in GHG pollution that we need to create a sustainable clean energy economy."

"We look forward to continuing our work with the Obama Administration to ensure these new standards are implemented in a way that holds the auto industry accountable, delivers on the promise of significant fuel efficiency improvement and pollution reduction, and maximizes job creation in America. We applaud the efforts undertaken so far and believe that strong, feasible standards can guarantee the best possible outcome for American workers, our communities, the economy, and the environment," said Foster.


Major Increases in Car and Light Truck Fuel Economy Standards Take Shape, but Some Provisions Could Undermine Economic and Environmental Benefits

Washington, D.C. (July 29, 2011): President Obama today presented a plan to increase fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for cars and light trucks in 2017-2025 that would raise fuel economy to 75 percent above 2010 levels. "This is a major step in reducing our oil dependence and consumers' vulnerability to high gasoline costs," said ACEEE Transportation Program Director Therese Langer. "By 2030, this round of standards could save more oil than we currently import from Saudi Arabia and Iraq, combined."

The proposal does not drive advanced technology to its maximum potential, however, and includes provisions that could undermine the program's economic and environmental benefits. "There's a possibility of further erosion before the standards are finalized, so the next several months will be crucial to ensuring that the benefits this program promises are realized," said Langer.

Fuel economy requirements vary by vehicle size, with smaller vehicles having higher targets than larger ones. But the percentage efficiency improvement for large trucks will be much below what will be required of cars and smaller trucks. "Letting U.S. manufacturers return to the pre-bailout mode of foot-dragging on fuel efficiency for large pickups goes against the interests of the consumer and, in the longer term, the industry itself," said Langer. "We'd like to see safeguards against manufacturers' gaming the standards by making more trucks, and bigger trucks, to lower the fuel efficiency requirements for their products.

While the level of the standards in 2025 will be near 50 miles per gallon once air conditioning credits are accounted for, the resulting average vehicle window label value will be between about 36 miles per gallon. That's because the standards are based on laboratory testing, while the labels factor in adjustments for actual performance on the road.

By 2025, the program could cut greenhouse gas emissions from new cars and trucks nearly in two from today's levels. The proposal aims to accelerate production of electric vehicles by allowing manufacturers to count them as zero emissions vehicles. While this could be an effective incentive, it will increase gasoline vehicles' emissions by more than the electric vehicles will reduce them. "Electric vehicles are oil-free and typically quite efficient," said Langer. "But as these vehicles reach the market in greater numbers, we cannot afford to ignore the power plant emissions associated with vehicle charging."

A full proposal from the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency is expected in early fall, with a final rule to follow in the summer of 2012.

About ACEEE: The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy is an independent, nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing energy efficiency as a means of promoting economic prosperity, energy security, and environmental protection. For information about ACEEE and its programs, publications, and conferences, visit aceee.org.


Ceres Releases Statement on Fuel Efficiency Agreement, Results of New Report Showing Economic Benefits of Strong MPG

Strong fuel efficiency/GHG standards would create nearly 700,000 jobs nationwide, including 63,000 jobs in auto sector; Consumers would save $152 billion at the pump

BOSTON – As President Obama announces the next round of a coordinated national program to improve fuel efficiency for model year 2017-2025 cars and light-duty trucks, Ceres, a national coalition of investors and public-interest organizations, today released "More Jobs Per Gallon," an economic analysis by the independent firm Management Information Services, Inc. that quantifies what stronger fuel economy/GHG standards would mean for the U.S. economy.

"We commend the Obama Administration on today's important step to boost fuel economy and reduce vehicle emissions, which will create jobs, drive innovation, save consumers money and reduce our dependence on foreign oil," said Mindy S. Lubber, president of Ceres. "Our report makes clear that the stronger the standards, the greater the economic benefits, and we urge the Administration to ensure a strong national program."

Ceres' new report, available at www.ceres.org, evaluated different regulatory scenarios under consideration for CAFE mileage and GHG emissions improvements – specifically, improvements of three, four, five and six percent per year for model years 2017-25.

Among the report's key findings:
· The six percent scenario (roughly 60 MPG) would generate an estimated $152 billion in fuel savings for consumers in 2030 compared to business as usual. Of the $152 billion saved at the pump, $59 billion would be expected to be spent in the auto industry as drivers purchase cleaner, more efficient vehicles. The remaining $93 billion will be spent across the rest of the economy, boosting consumers' discretionary income for everything from retail purchases to restaurant trips to increased spending on health care.

· Nearly 700,000 new full time jobs would be created under the six percent scenario, compared to only about 350,000 jobs under the three percent (roughly 47 MPG) scenario.

· 63,000 new, full-time domestic auto industry jobs would be created in 2030 under the six percent scenario; more than double the 31,000 jobs under the three percent scenario.

· States seeing the biggest gains in terms of relative impact on their job markets also have some of the largest auto industry sectors. Again, job growth would be significantly higher under the six percent scenario. The top 12 states in terms of percentage job increases include Indiana, Michigan, Alabama, Kentucky, Tennessee, Ohio, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Vermont, Oregon, New York and Missouri.

· Net jobs gains in 49 states, and greatest job gains under strongest standards. Each of the four regulatory scenarios analyzed would bring substantial economic and job benefits for the U.S. economy in 2030.

· Effects on state GDPs would be overwhelmingly positive. States seeing the biggest percentage GDP gains under the strongest fuel efficiency standard have large auto industry sectors. The biggest gainers would be Michigan and Indiana, followed by Kentucky, South Carolina, Tennessee, Wisconsin, Iowa, Ohio, Alabama and Oregon. Compared to the three percent scenario, the six percent scenario would bring 382,000 more jobs, a $15.7 billion increase in gross economic output (sales), $10.3 billion more in personal income, and $9.5 billon more in tax revenue for cash strapped federal, state and local governments.

For more details and to read the full report, visit: www.ceres.org/more-jobs-per-gallon

About Ceres: Ceres is a national coalition of investors, environmental groups and other public interest organizations working with companies to address sustainability challenges such as climate change. www.ceres.org


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 69 Comments
      mylexicon
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'm not a big fan of CAFE, but this does have one saving grace--no oil relapse. The last time the oil markets were moving against us, we increased supply and improved fuel efficiency and industrial efficiency. The oil market collapsed as we broke speculator pricing-power and the cartel arrangement. After the collapse we decided to start burning oil like the crisis never happened which has brought us to this point. We are increasing supply again, and we are improving efficiency, but with a strict 2025 CAFE standard, we have hopefully taken away the possibility of a relapse.
      Kent
      • 4 Years Ago
      Here in the Chicago area, we have had some very severe weather in the past 6 weeks. Many people have lost power for hours to several days at a time. So, if the President wants to increase the number of electrical vehicles on the road, someone has to consider the potential problem of a large metropolitan area with power outages. If people can't recharge their cars, then how do they get to work? Or, when a metro area has an extended heat wave, something is bound to happen between 5pm and 7pm, when all of those cars are plugged into the grid. Say what you want about engines that run on gas or diesel, but they will run when the power is out.
      TDIMeister
      • 4 Years Ago
      I would have preferred the MPG-equivalent of the EU's 95 g/km CO2 by 2020, but I guess you'll have to take what you can from Washington these days... Incidentally, the 95 g/km CO2 figure equals about 69 MPG (imp.) or 57.5 MPG (US) so in the scheme of things, we're not all that far off. But it's nevertheless 3 MPGs fewer and 5 years later. I would have like to see some leadership on this. Further is the understanding that light-duty trucks are exempt from the calculation of CAFE.
        lne937s
        • 4 Years Ago
        @TDIMeister
        Where we fall behind is that we apply looser standards to trucks and allow credits for various technologies like flex fuel and air conditioning refrigerants, where they have one standard for all passenger vehicles without the credits. As such, our true mpg average of all passenger vehicles comes out significantly lower, despite similar headline numbers.
      Huy
      • 4 Years Ago
      First off, the CAFE standards are bunk. NPR interviewed an Edmunds associate editor who said the CAFE standards are basically equivalent to 40 EPA mpg. Autoblog should have established this. Second, to everyone who thinks that the government is intruding on choice - think about the government's impact on your current ability to buy gasoline. That is the current and major intrusion on your freedom. Subsidies and grants make fossil fuels the energy store of choice in America.
      Chilipepper
      • 4 Years Ago
      I am not happy with the new standards. The market will decide what the market wants. If there are cars that get 60 MPG, but can only muster 0-60 times of 10 seconds and people want to buy them, great. I don't and shouldn't be forced to. If I want a sports car that delivers fantastic performance, but only gets 25 MPG, I should be able to buy it. Whatever happened to personal freedom?
        akhomerun
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Chilipepper
        a few examples to prove my point: 2011 mustang V6, 300 hp, 30 mpg (hwy) 1995 mustang V6 145 27 mpg (hwy) so in 16 years economy was improved while power was doubled. what makes you think we won't have fast, efficient sports cars in 2025? in 1995 you wouldn't have even considered a V6 mustang to BE a sports car!
        Smilingoat
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Chilipepper
        gah, your not being forced to. and the "free market" is only screwing us in the long run, made very clear by the lack of american companies creating american jobs. or american made products being sold outside of america. the theory would only barely work if all countries participated, which is far from the case.
          RJC
          • 4 Years Ago
          @Smilingoat
          The free market? That nice proven, long term and sustainable economic model with bubbles, recessions, fraud scandals, illegal manipulation, world economy destroyers? That free market? The one that's working, oh so well? Hey, nice track record. End sarcasm.
        K Gav
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Chilipepper
        The funny thing is that if you "let the market decide" it could also have the exact opposite effect of what you think it might have. For example, if there were no fuel economy standards average economy could very well be 10-12 mpg (average PERFORMANCE car economy could also be 6-7 mpg). Should I guess that you'd be racing down to you local dealer to get that car with the "fantastic performance"? Probably not. If anything, that would most likely KILL the performance car market. On the other hand, if automakers are forced to develop new fuel efficiency technologies you might be able to go get an nice 400 hp machine that still gets 25+ mpg.
        Todd Fleming
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Chilipepper
        Oh you'll still beable to buy them, they'll be called exotic cars reserved for the uber rich cost over 100K and done in small quantities so they dont have to follow the CAFE standards. The rest of us will be forced to drive what the rich would never touch.
        Think Free
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Chilipepper
        Chillipepper, reading most of these posts (are they from autoblog green?) most do not have a clue what you talking about and couldnt care less about the individual. Very sad.
      Rex Seven
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'M NOT HAPPY WITH THAT. OBAMA SHOULD DECIDE WHAT LIMO-ONE GETS FOR MPG's AND I SHOULD DECIDE WHAT MY CAR GETS!!!! DO THE LETTERS "F - O " MEAN ANYTHING TO OUR "PUBLIC SERVANTS"?
      • 4 Years Ago
      [blocked]
        brian
        • 4 Years Ago
        And moving forward would be to continue sending more of our kids overseas to fight a 10 year old war so we can have $2/gallon gasoline? Moron.
          Think Free
          • 4 Years Ago
          @brian
          Moron, I mean Brian, if envirothugs allowed us to drill for oil here we woiuld have $2 gas without the middle-east wars. And, if gas remains at $4 we do not need the Gov to force us into efficient cars, we would choose them with free will.
          MCA
          • 4 Years Ago
          @brian
          Think Free, care to cite a source for your "if envirothugs allowed us to drill for oil here we woiuld have $2 gas without the middle-east wars." claim? Hrrrm?
          • 4 Years Ago
          @brian
          [blocked]
        spa2nky1
        • 4 Years Ago
        Please elaborate...how is this moving backwards?
          • 4 Years Ago
          @spa2nky1
          [blocked]
      Wai
      • 4 Years Ago
      Shouldn't that guy be in DC trying to fix the national debt crisis? Also, raising the MPG won't help. Oil companies will just increase gas costs to compensate for their "lack" of profit and will screw everyone who doesn't have enough money to buy a new 54.5mpg car. Those who do will just be driving around 0-60 cars that take 15 seconds. So basically, the winner is China.
        K Gav
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Wai
        You make zero sense. The whole point of the increased CAFE standards is to reduce demand for oil = less imports = smaller deficit. If oil companies/OPEC cut back on the supply to maintain price/barrel, they'll still make less, because they'll be selling less barrels. The average consumer will also benefit greatly, because they'll be buying less gas, so price flactuations will have far less of an impact on the average family's budget.
        brian
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Wai
        A President's job often involves doing more than one thing at a time. That's why a President needs to be smarter than most people - not someone who you think you could have a beer with or who looks good in a skirt.
        Stix
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Wai
        At least Obama is making an effort to warn the country about the impending debt crisis, and the possibility of the debt ceiling being raised again and the government having to default on their bills. What the hell have you been doing the entire time? Other than just bitching and whining that "nobody" is taking the debt crisis seriously (when everyone is worried and scared about it)?
        guyverfanboy
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Wai
        That entire argument sounds ridiculous.
      Ryan
      • 4 Years Ago
      This is one time where I support the government stepping in and trying to deal directly with consumer stupidy. Everyone on here shouting "Errr, dat der black guy who broke in to da white house and took da President's job aint gonna tell me I can't spend no one-third of my paycheck on my sixteen mile-per-gallon truck, durrrrr" are just as moronic as everyone who thinks they need to have 6 children because it's their right. It's the dumb decision making such as that that will eventually make matters worse than they will be with just higher CAFE standards and more efficient, smaller cars. I'm glad it'll be more of a hassle and expense for Spanky T. Clemet to buy and drive his lifted Dodge 1500 4x4 that gets somewhere between bad and horrible miles per gallon out to the ol' mud road and show off his inbreeding. I live in Iowa, and if you live anywhere near me, you know exactly what i'm talking about. People making $10 per hour that drive $40,000 trucks with $5,000-$10,000 in modifications that live in sh*thole houses. Sure, it's your money, do what you want, but you're still an idiot.
        cooker263
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Ryan
        What right do you have to make others' decisions for them? I think your long-winded comment was wasteful & inefficiently written - should I have the power to ban you from writing online comments because I may think you're wasting the time of all of our intelligent readers? Just remember, if you think it's morally permissible to interfere in personal habits, you're sewing the seeds for future interference in your own personal habits that you may object to. A free society may have things you don't like, but it's not really a free society if everyone has the power to regulate everyone else's decisions.
        Rob
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Ryan
        That was special. You could have just said that you hated pickups and people less fortunate than yourself, and you consider CAFE their punishment. Much more concise
        Basil Exposition
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Ryan
        Wow, you sounds kinda bitter and angry.
        Think Free
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Ryan
        Raciest.
      Think Free
      • 4 Years Ago
      Can anyone show me where in the Constitution it allows our Fed Gov to limit choices on products/
        RJC
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Think Free
        I'm sure there's a clause in there that allows for government intervention to protect the general populace and the long term health of the country against destructive or criminal practices or activities. But judging from those who tanked the economy for quick and personal gain, and have yet to see any jail time, the policing must not apply to them.
      rmkensington
      • 4 Years Ago
      So is the NHTSA going to back off on these ridiculous safety standards that make a normal 4 door car weigh 4,000 pounds?
      soundbargaming
      • 4 Years Ago
      Heres the problem. Instead of setting targets for GAS mileage, why not set a target to be completely off of gas by a certain date. That should stimulate research. All this is saying to the oil companies is "we'll continue to let you screw us till at least 2025." Why not say "Hover board by 2025."? Or "Real flying car by 2025"(not you Terrafugia).?
        Paul P.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @soundbargaming
        The problem with that is...if it isn't possible with the technology available or consumers don't want it, what happens when the standard then fails to be met? When a standard is created it needs to be realistic based on the projected technology at hand and what consumers are willing to accept. We could set a standard that everyone needs to be driving Teslas by 2025, but that's simply not realistic.
          soundbargaming
          • 4 Years Ago
          @Paul P.
          Good point. However, its 2011. I was sure I would be taking off from my driveway straight up in the air, futuristic spaceship sounds and all and heading to my destination by now. But no, we're still talking about gas.
        Stix
        • 4 Years Ago
        @soundbargaming
        It's not as easy as you think it is. Some companies do have R&D going on over alternative fuels, but so far, we only have just one practical (somewhat) alternative to petroleum, which is pure electricity. Hybrids and diesels don't count since they still require some form of petroleum to be used for making their engines run. Even so, electric cars have a lot of drawbacks that prevent us from truly ever replacing petrol-powered cars throughout the country. Developing an engine to run on alternative fuels is hard enough as it is. Trying to sell these types of cars to the general public is even more difficult.
        akhomerun
        • 4 Years Ago
        @soundbargaming
        there's already tons of money going toward battery and charging technology without unrealistic government regulation like this. not only is battery technology important for electric cars (and whoever manages a breakthrough will be wealthy beyond imagination) but it's also important for consumer electronics.
        guyverfanboy
        • 4 Years Ago
        @soundbargaming
        Doubtful.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @soundbargaming
        [blocked]
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