Cleaner Cars to Hit the Fast Lane as a Result of State and Presidential Leadership

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Emily Figdor,
202-744-8204 (c),
202-683-1250 (o)

Cleaner Cars to Hit the Fast Lane as a Result of State and Presidential Leadership

WASHINGTON - President Obama will
announce today
that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of
Transportation
will establish a uniform federal standard to reduce global warming
pollution
from cars and light trucks and improve vehicle efficiency. 
The standard, which will be the first ever
federal global warming standard for vehicles, will largely mirror the
standard
already adopted by California
and 13 other states.


 

“We’re thrilled by
this announcement
to put cleaner cars on the road. 
President Obama is proving himself behind the wheel in the race
to a
clean energy economy.  This historic
action will reduce our nation’s dependence on oil, save consumers money
at the
pump, and cut global warming pollution. 
This is what leadership looks like,” said Environment America
Federal
Global Warming Program Director Emily Figdor.


 

The standard will
reduce global
warming pollution from new vehicles by 30 percent and achieve an
average fuel
economy of 35.5 miles per gallon by 2016 – four years earlier than
under current
law.  According to the White House, the
program will save 1.8 billion barrels of oil and reduce global warming
pollution by 900 million metric tons, which is equivalent to
eliminating the
pollution from 177 million of today’s cars or 194 coal plants. 


 

“Environment America applauds California and the 13 other states
that
spearheaded the drive for cleaner cars. 
We wouldn’t be here today if it weren’t for their trailblazing
efforts
to reduce our oil dependence and work to solve global warming,”
concluded Figdor.


 

Background:

* Environment America
is a
federation of state-based environmental groups that worked to adopt
many of the
state clean cars standards.  To speak
with state experts on the importance to the state of addressing global
warming
pollution through cleaner cars, contact Jen Mueller at (202) 683-1250
or jennifer@environmentamerica.org.


 

* Passenger vehicles
are the second
largest source of global warming pollution nationwide.


 

* In 2005, California
adopted first-of-their-kind
standards requiring cars and light-duty trucks to limit their global
warming
pollution.  A total of 13 other
states—Arizona, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New
Jersey, New Mexico,
New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and
Washington—have
adopted the tailpipe standards.  Several
additional states are actively considering adopting the standards.


 

* In 2007, Congress
passed the first
increase in fuel economy standards in 32 years; those standards require
an
average fuel economy of 35 mile-per-gallon by 2020.



 

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Environment America is a federation of state-based, citizen-funded environmental advocacy organizations. Our professional staff in 27 states and Washington, D.C., combines independent research, practical ideas and tough-minded advocacy to overcome the opposition of powerful special interests and win real results for the environment. Environment America draws on 30 years of success in tackling environmental problems.

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