News from Notch Consulting, Inc.

October 26, 2010

NHTSA, EPA Propose First Greenhouse Gas and Fuel Efficiency Standards for Trucks and Buses

Filed under: General — Notch @ 6:30 am

On October 25, the U.S. EPA and the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced the first national standards to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and increase the fuel efficiency of heavy-duty trucks and buses. The comprehensive national program is projected to reduce GHG emissions by nearly 250 million metric tons and save 500 million barrels of oil over the lives of the vehicles produced within the program’s first five years.

The proposed standards will cover three categories of heavy trucks: combination tractors, heavy-duty pickups and vans, and vocational vehicles. For combination tractors, the agencies are proposing engine and vehicle standards that begin in the 2014 model year and achieve up to a 20 percent reduction in CO2 emissions and fuel consumption by 2018 model year. For heavy-duty pickup trucks and vans, the agencies are proposing separate gasoline and diesel truck standards which phase in starting in the 2014 model year and achieve up to a 10 percent reduction for gasoline vehicles and 15 percent reduction for diesel vehicles by 2018 model year (12 and 17 percent respectively if accounting for air conditioning leakage). Lastly, for vocational vehicles, the agencies are proposing engine and vehicle standards starting in the 2014 model year which would achieve up to a 10 percent reduction in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by 2018 model year.

The EPA and NHTSA are providing a 60-day comment period that begins when the proposal is published in the Federal Register. The proposal as well as information about how to submit comments is at: http://www.epa.gov/otaq/climate/regulations.htm and http://www.nhtsa.gov/fuel-economy.

As part of the process of developing this proposed rulemaking, NHTSA has prepared a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for its proposed fuel efficiency standards. The Draft EIS compares the environmental impacts of the agency’s proposal with those of a number of regulatory alternatives. Comments may be submitted on the Draft EIS through January 3, 2011, and information on the submission of comments for this document may be found at the NHTSA Web address listed above.

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