Safety and emissions regulations have long been touchy subjects in the auto industry, because they can dictate the legality of automobiles and are not the same from country to country. Fragmented regulations add costs to vehicle sales, and they inhibit the ability of automakers to offer the same products around the globe.
When it comes to any new regulation that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration deems "not controversial and therefore unlikely to receive adverse comment," it would like the power to implement the regulation without the standard period of public comment. It seeks the change in order to be able to clear and finalize "routine" rules in a matter of days. If NHTSA is granted the power it seeks, people could still comment on such regulations and request changes, but the agency could igno
Aceh, a province of Indonesia, is the only one of the island nation's areas to have adopted Sharia law. Over the past few years the region of 4.5 million has passed laws to bring its populace, native and otherwise, more into line with its interpretation of Sharia, opening a Sharia court and instituting a Sharia police force, passing a law to stone adulterers, banning tight pants and re-educating "punks."
The uncertain future of the alternative-powered and alternative-fueled vehicle is being decided by a confluence of old and new technology, big business and start-ups, marketing, vested interests, and public perception. It is no surprise, then, that when it comes to government regulation, we are bound to end up with some conflicting decisions. A company in California that converts regular hybrids to plug-in hybrids has found itself smack in the middle of one of those conflicts.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Stephen Johnson (shown above) has found himself with few friends after denying California's request for a waiver to regulate its own emissions. The denial was issued shortly after President Bush signed the new energy bill into law, leaving some to wonder if the auto industry struck a deal with the White House - we'll give you your energy bill if you give us one national emissions standard to follow, i.e. don't allow California to set its own set of s