Proposed Fuel Efficiency Rules a First Step in Reducing Dangerous Greenhouse Gas Pollution From Trucks and Buses, But Don’t Go Far Enough

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Kassie Siegel, (760) 366-2232 x 302, ksiegel@biologicaldiversity.org

Proposed Fuel Efficiency Rules a First Step in Reducing Dangerous Greenhouse Gas Pollution From Trucks and Buses, But Don’t Go Far Enough

WASHINGTON - The
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Transportation today
released the first-ever proposal to control greenhouse gas pollution and improve
fuel efficiency for medium and heavy-duty vehicles. While curbing greenhouse gas
pollution from these vehicles is an historic step (they typically average less
than 10 miles per gallon), the proposal falls short of what is technologically
and economically feasible.  

“These trucks and buses produce about 20
percent of total greenhouse pollution from the transportation sector, so it’s
imperative that we reduce their emissions. Today’s proposal is a critical first
step, but it doesn’t go far enough and leaves available pollution reductions on
the table,” said Kierán Suckling, executive director of the Center for
Biological Diversity.

Today’s proposal would reduce greenhouse
emissions from three categories of trucks and buses:

  • Tractor-trailers: by 7 to
    20 percent compared to the 2010 baseline;
  • Heavy-duty pickups and
    vans: by up to 10 percent
    for gasoline vehicles and 15 percent for diesel vehicles
    by the 2018 model year (12 and 17 percent respectively if accounting for
    air-conditioning leakage) compared to the 2010 baseline;
  •  “Vocational vehicles”
    including trucks and bus types such as delivery, refuse, utility, dump, transit
    bus and shuttle buses: by up to 10 percent by the 2018 model year compared to
    the 2010 baseline. 

The proposal, however, does not require
additional pollution reductions that are feasible, including from other
technologies already in use or under development.  For example, a recent National Academy of
Sciences report found that an over 50% reduction in fuel use from the 2010
baseline could be achieved in the 2015-2020 timeframe from tractor-trailers
alone.   

Since 1990, the transportation sector has
been the fastest-growing source of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. In 2008, 29
percent of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions came from cars, trucks and other
transportation sources. Today’s announcement applies to model year 2014-2018
medium and heavy-duty vehicles.

In November 2007, the Center for Biological
Diversity, its allies and more than a dozen states won a landmark court victory
overturning the Bush administration’s fuel-economy standards for passenger cars
and light trucks model years 2008-2011, in part because of the administration’s
failure to consider the impact of greenhouse gas emissions and global warming.

Read more about the Center’s Climate Law Institute and its campaign to curb global warming
pollution from transportation.

###

At the Center for Biological Diversity, we believe that the welfare of human beings is deeply linked to nature - to the existence in our world of a vast diversity of wild animals and plants. Because diversity has intrinsic value, and because its loss impoverishes society, we work to secure a future for all species, great and small, hovering on the brink of extinction. We do so through science, law, and creative media, with a focus on protecting the lands, waters, and climate that species need to survive.

Share This Article

More in: