Post by Kady on Apr 26, 2021 12:23:23 GMT -5
EPA moves to give California right to set climate limits on cars, SUVs
Source: Washington Post
The Environmental Protection Agency announced Monday that it will move to grant California permission to set stricter climate requirements for cars and SUVs, a reversal of a key Trump administration policy. The step, coming days after the Transportation Department withdrew Trump-era restrictions of state tailpipe emission rules, could help pave the way for a broader climate deal with the nation’s automakers. The administration’s actions will give the populous state with big climate ambitions more leverage in discussions between car company executives, autoworkers and federal officials over national mileage and greenhouse gas emission standards for new passenger vehicles.
Thirteen states and D.C. have signed onto California’s tailpipe emission standards. Collectively they represent 36 percent of the U.S. auto market. “I am a firm believer in California’s long-standing statutory authority to lead. The 2019 decision to revoke the state’s waiver to enforce its greenhouse gas pollution standards for cars and trucks was legally dubious and an attack on the public’s health and wellbeing,” Biden’s EPA administrator, Michael Regan, said in a statement. “Today, we are delivering on President Biden’s clear direction to tackle the climate crisis by taking a major step forward to restore state leadership and advance EPA’s greenhouse gas pollution reduction goals.”
On Thursday, Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg took his own action by proposing to withdraw his department’s part of a Trump administration rule blocking states from setting their own tailpipe standards. And both announcements come on the heels of a summit hosted by Biden meant to spur other nations to ramp up their commitments to tackling climate change and build momentum for passage of an infrastructure package meant to build out a nationwide network of charging stations.
“The transportation sector is the U.S. economy’s largest contributor to greenhouse gases,” Buttigieg said Thursday in remarks at a charging station in Union Station in D.C. to celebrate Earth Day. “And that relationship to the problem of climate change means that we in transportation can also be the biggest part of the solution." The proposed Transportation Department rule, which will be subject to 30 days of public comment once it is published in the Federal Register, will no longer bar individual states such as California from establishing their own greenhouse gas emissions standards and zero-emissions vehicle mandates.
Read more: www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2021/04/26/california-car-climate-waiver/