Obama Announces New Automobile Standards

September 15, 2009

(ChattahBox)—In a White House briefing on Tuesday, President Obama announced new automobile standards designed to cut down on greenhouse gas emissions, provide for better fuel efficiency and to encourage the production of more environmentally friendly vehicles.

Under the new standards, automakers would be allowed to incorporate the improvements over time, with a 2016 deadline to meet the goal of all light truck and cars having an average fuel economy of 35.5 miles per gallon.

Standing alongside the President at the briefing today, were EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. The two agency heads provided a blueprint for implementing Obama’s new plan that would provide Americans with a cleaner environment.

The new standards would cost the auto industry more than $100 billion to implement, but once the initial investments are made in technology to produce hybrid and electric vehicles and other clean vehicles, automakers would be in a position to benefit over the long term.

Consumers would save an estimated $3,000 over the lifetime of a 2016 mode car under the new standards, according to EPA Administrator Jackson.

This announcement comes at a critical time for the Obama administration, as he prepares to appear at the UN in New York later this month, to discuss reducing green house gas emissions with European nations, before the major climate-change meeting in Copenhagen.

Jackson spoke of the importance of a tough new policy to protect the environment, while also providing for the foundation for a thriving auto industry based on fuel efficiency and lower carbon emissions.

“This marks a significant advance in our work to protect health and the environment and move our nation into the sustainable, energy-efficient economy of the future,” said Jackson.

There has been some discussion of a “feebate” system, which would provide consumers who buy fuel-efficient vehicles with a lump-sum subsidy, paid for by a fee tacked on to more gas-guzzling vehicles. When asked about the “freebate” proposal introduced in the Senate last month, he remained non-committal.

“I think what we want to do is implement these standards and see how they work, and then look at what the price of a gallon of gasoline is,” LaHood said.



One Response to “Obama Announces New Automobile Standards”

  1. Arizona Lemon Law on September 26th, 2009 3:32 pm

    It seems like more study is needed, but not let’s sidestep the issue. How about a pilot program? That might be one quick way to get some real data for how this scenario would play out. Gasoline prices are lower still in the USA than in many countries, especially Europe. Or why not try to bring down the cost of 100% electric vehicles so we are not dependent upon foreign nations for our fuel?

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