The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release
Contact: Elliott Negin,Media Director,

New EPA Light Duty Vehicle Standards Will Reduce Climate-Endangering Emissions

Statement by Steven Higashide, Union of Concerned Scientists

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued the strongest standards to date to limit emissions from light-duty passenger cars and trucks. Starting in 2027, these rules will require emissions reductions in all new cars sold, which automakers can achieve by implementing cleaner technologies for gasoline engines or by adding more zero-emission electric vehicles to their offerings. This rule will reduce transportation pollution, an important step in a broader effort to create a cleaner transportation system, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).

Below is a statement by Steven Higashide, director of the Clean Transportation Program at UCS.

“Today’s announcement will shift the trajectory of the automobile market and put us on a path to real emissions reductions, with an estimated 7.2 billion tons of global warming pollution avoided by 2055. These rules are the strongest standards ever finalized and vital for meeting U.S. climate goals. This rule is technology-neutral and won’t mandate electric vehicles, but it will encourage this growing market. New cars sold in the coming years will be on the road for a decade or more, so it’s vital that these rules cut emissions from gasoline cars as well as encourage zero-emission electric cars.

“However, EPA should have gone even further because we have the technology to be more ambitious. The science is clear on both the urgent need to cut climate-endangering emissions and the fact that we can make the cuts we need. We don’t have many opportunities to reduce transportation pollution and it’s disappointing that this rule falls short of what’s possible. We’ll continue to push the administration to create, implement and enforce the strongest rules possible.

“These standards will help clean up emissions from transportation—the biggest source of global warming pollution in the U.S. To achieve their full potential, these rules must be accompanied by other investments in a cleaner, more accessible transportation system. These investments—many of which are already underway—must build out charging infrastructure for electric vehicles, boost domestic manufacturing, put more renewable power on the electric grid, and expand transit, walking and bicycling options. We need to use every policy tool available to reduce the dangers of climate change and build the transportation system of the future.”

The Union of Concerned Scientists is the leading science-based nonprofit working for a healthy environment and a safer world. UCS combines independent scientific research and citizen action to develop innovative, practical solutions and to secure responsible changes in government policy, corporate practices, and consumer choices.