President Trump Poised To Lower Requirements For Greenhouse Gases & Fuel Emissions
President Donald Trump is reportedly working with members of his administration to roll back Obama-era regulations on fuel emissions and greenhouse gas standards, an issue he campaigned heavily on.
On Thursday, the New York Times reported the steps that the Trump administration was taking in order to “substantially roll back Obama-era standards” concerning greenhouse gas emissions but emphasized that as of now no such plans have yet been finalized. However, the Times did confirm that EPA director Scott Pruitt had already delivered a 16-page draft for review.
Former President Barack Obama was widely criticized by Republican lawmakers for his strict EPA standards in an effort to curb the U.S.’s carbon footprint. Republicans stressed that the former president’s regulations were a textbook example of government overreach.
The standards set in place by the Obama administration sought to double the fuel efficiency of new vehicles sold in the United States to 50 miles per gallon by 2025. It also called for a review of the measures feasibility in 2018.
Automakers are also pressing the Federal Government to avoid a legal confrontation with California, which has opposed the EPA’s proposed regulation reduction. Car companies are pushing for a single nationwide auto-emissions standard. Jim Lentz, the North American chief executive of Toyota, said that going by individual state’s own mandates on emissions would “create an absolute nightmare for us to figure out.”
Trump’s lowering of the bar is likely to benefit automobile companies, which have been struggling to keep up with the global demand for vehicles with less environmental impact. As the only country not participating in the Paris Climate Accord, the U.S. is on its own internationally. With public pressure to see more environmentally friendly vehicles on the road, the measure may not have as big an impact as it might have had in the past.