NEW RULES FOR TRUCKS, VANS

Tough EPA stan­dards aim to slash car­bon diox­ide emis­sions by 24% over 12 years.

Los Angeles Times - - TECHNOLOGY - As­so­ci­ated press

The Obama ad­min­is­tra­tion on Fri­day pro­posed tough new stan­dards to re­duce pol­lu­tion from car­bone­mit­ting trucks and vans, the latest move by the pres­i­dent to ad­dress global warm­ing.

The new rules from the En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion Agency are de­signed to slash car­bon diox­ide emis­sions by 24% over the next 12 years while re­duc­ing oil con­sump­tion by up to 1.8 bil­lion bar­rels over the life­time of the ve­hi­cles sold un­der the rules.

Medium- and heavy-duty ve­hi­cles ac­count for about 20% of green­house gas emis­sions and oil use in the U.S. trans­porta­tion sec­tor, a con­trib­u­tor to cli­mate change. The trucks and vans com­prise only 5% of ve­hi­cles on the road.

The rules come amid a f lurry of re­cent ac­tions by Obama on the en­vi­ron­ment, in­clud­ing a new fed­eral rule reg­u­lat­ing small streams and wet­lands and a sep­a­rate rule to re­strict green­house gas emis­sions from air­planes.

Trans­porta­tion Sec­re­tary An­thony Foxx said the rules would help the en­vi­ron­ment and the econ­omy, as trucks use less fuel and ship­ping costs go down.

The truck rule ap­peared to gen­er­ate less con­tro­versy than some of the pre­vi­ous reg­u­la­tions on the is­sue, although the in­dus­try was still re­view­ing the pro­posal.

The Amer­i­can Truck­ing Assn. said it sup­ports the new rules but re­mains con­cerned that they may re­sult in tech­nolo­gies be­ing used on ve­hi­cles be­fore they can be fully tested.

Trucks carry goods from pro­duce to tim­ber and oil, as well as pack­ages from ma­jor com­pa­nies such as Ama­zon, on highways across the coun­try.

“Fuel is an enor­mous ex­pense for our in­dus­try, and car­bon emis­sions carry an enor­mous cost for our planet,” said ATA Pres­i­dent and Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Bill Graves.

Still, Graves and other of­fi­cials said truck and en­gine man­u­fac­tur­ers need time to de­velop so­lu­tions to meet the new stan­dards

The stan­dards would cover the model years 20212027 and ap­ply to semitrucks, large pickup trucks and vans, and all types and sizes of buses and work trucks, of­fi­cials said.

The rules build on fuel ef­fi­ciency and car­bon pol­lu­tion stan­dards al­ready in place for the model years 2014-2018. Those rules are ex­pected to re­duce green­house gas emis­sions by 270 mil­lion met­ric tons and save ve­hi­cle own­ers more than $50 bil­lion in fuel costs, com­pared with pre­vi­ous stan­dards.

The rules will be open to public com­ment for at least two months be­fore be­ing com­pleted next year.

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