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U.S. automakers want Trump to lower vehicle emission standards

By Karen Graham     Feb 13, 2017 in Business
The CEOs of 18 major automakers and their U.S. units are banking on Donald Trump's commitment to jobs in the automotive sector and have sent him a letter urging him to reconsider greenhouse gas standards instituted during the Obama administration.
In a letter sent late Friday and viewed by Reuters, the chief executives of General Motors Co, Ford Motor Co, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV, along with the top North American executives at Toyota Motor Corp, Volkswagen AG, Honda Motor Co, Hyundai Motor Co, Nissan Motor Co, and others are urging Trump to flat out reverse the EPA's fuel efficiency rules.
The letter also warns that failing to do so will put thousands of American jobs at risk. The auto execs want Trump to take a second look at the midterm review "without prejudging the outcome" while praising Trump's "personal focus on steps to strengthen the economy in the United States and your commitment to jobs in our sector."
Haze caused by vehicle emissions hangs over Jakarta's skyline
Haze caused by vehicle emissions hangs over Jakarta's skyline
Bay Ismoyo, AFP/File
EPA emissions standards rule
In 2012, the EPA and the Obama administration set stringent emissions rules for automakers, and under the terms of the rule, U.S. automakers would have until 2025 to double fuel efficiency to 54.5 MPG. Accomplishing this goal would cut U.S. oil consumption and greenhouse gas emissions by the time they were fully implemented in 2025, according to the EPA, reported the Washington Post.
Engadget is reporting that the automakers are claiming the tougher requirements would raise production costs and don't match the public's buying habits, in addition to the jobs in the automotive industry that would be at risk. But Engadget also points out what a lot of people reading this must be thinking - Jobs at risk? That is a lot of malarkey.
File photo: Electric car being charged in Amsterdam.
File photo: Electric car being charged in Amsterdam.
Ludovic Hirlimann / Wikimedia (CC BY-SA 2.0)
Keep in mind that the EPA has already acknowledged automakers would fall far short of the emission standards required under the rule because of a shift in public buying habits toward SUVs and trucks. Not only that but Ford Motors has moved away from small car manufacturing and is now focused on the adoption of electric vehicles, which would meet emission standards within the next few years.
The Hill points out that in January, before Trump took office, the Obama administration decided it would not change the emission rules, saying they will cut down on fuel costs for consumers and help in reducing greenhouse gasses. And because Obama's decision on the rule came before the official deadline for making any changes, Trump will have a difficult time changing it.
More about Trump, Epa, fuel efficiency rules, Automakers, locked in through 2025
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