U.S. EPA and DOT seek public comment on proposed fuel economy standards
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released a notice of proposed rulemaking, the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model Years 2021-2026 Passenger Cars and Light Trucks (SAFE Vehicles Rule). The standards will, in effect, reduce the planned fuel economy standards for vehicles of those model years. Public comment will be available for 60 days once published at the Federal Register.
As previously reported, the agencies state that lowering the standards will lower the purchase price of vehicles, which will lead to reduced greenhouse gas emissions. The belief is that the cheaper price will enable more people to replace their current cars with newer, more environmentally friendly vehicles.
The Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) is the first formal step in setting the 2021-2026 Model Year (MY) standards that must be achieved by each automaker for its car and light-duty truck fleet.
The EPA and NHTSA are seeking public comment on a wide range of regulatory options, including a preferred alternative that locks in MY 2020 standards through 2026. Additionally, the joint proposal initiates a process to establish a new 50-state fuel economy and tailpipe carbon dioxide emissions standard for passenger cars and light trucks covering MY 2021 through 2026.
The agencies said that they hope to issue a final rule this winter. Comments can be made at www.regulations.gov.