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article imageCalifornia board says 'No' to EPA freeze on new car emissions

By Karen Graham     Oct 2, 2018 in Environment
Sacramento - At its meeting on Friday, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) officially confirmed that it will stick with planned increases in emissions and fuel economy standards for cars sold in the state.
CARB had said in August it would not follow the Trump Administration's move to freeze federal emissions and fuel economy standards from 2020 through 2026.
As California has established itself as a leader in pushing for clean air, clean energy and the mitigation of global warming, it would have been just plain stupid not to stick to its guns. And that is exactly what CARB did.
This means that according to regulations set by CARB, cars sold in California will be required to get higher gas mileage and produce fewer emissions, as well as continue to require electric cars to be sold in the state.
The amendments passed by the board will require a 20 percent reduction in carbon intensity by 2030, the most stringent requirement in the nation. The new requirement aligns with California’s overall 2030 target of reducing climate-changing emissions 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030, which was set by Senate Bill 32 and signed by Governor Brown in 2016.
In a statement Friday, CARB chairwoman Mary Nichols said: "While we continue to work to keep a single national program, California will act to ensure strong standards are in place in California through 2025 and beyond to help us meet our climate targets and protect public health. Today’s vote by the Board ensures that California and 12 other states will not fall victim to the Trump administration’s rollback of vehicle standards should its proposal be finalized.”
California, along with 16 other states, plus Washington, D.C., sued the EPA over its proposal to freeze the emissions and fuel economy standards in May before it was officially released.
In addition to California and D.C., Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and Minnesota joined the lawsuit.
In a statement on May 1, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra said, “The evidence is irrefutable: today’s clean car standards are achievable, science-based and a boon for hardworking American families. But the EPA and Administrator Scott Pruitt refuse to do their job and enforce these standards."
More about Epa, emissions standards, freeze on emissions rules, Carb, Clean air