WASHINGTON (Jan. 28, 2011)—The Obama administration and the state of California agreed to a single timetable for proposing 2017-25 fuel economy standards after auto makers complained California was moving too fast.
The EPA, U.S. Department of Transportation and the state of California today said both sets of new standards would be proposed simultaneously, by Sept. 1.
California had previously said it would propose tailpipe emissions standards for cars and light trucks in March. The Obama administration was planning to release its proposal by the end of September.
The joint announcement today drew praise from auto makers as well as a major environmental group.
“Only the federal government can balance nationwide the need to reduce oil consumption and emissions with the preservation of a vital manufacturing sector,” said the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, which represents Detroit's three auto makers, Toyota and seven other companies.
Roland Hwang, transportation program director of the Natural Resources Defense Council, said the agreement “is important recognition that California is a full partner in developing the next generation of national car standards.”
The Obama administration had previously issued a preliminary proposal for fuel efficiency to rise to as much as 62 mpg by the 2025 model year.
The preliminary plan drew criticism from auto makers and praise from consumer activists and environmental groups.
The administration is seeking feedback before issuing a formal proposal.
Earlier this month, the alliance had complained to a House committee that “a rushed effort toward a state rulemaking is not in the spirit of a collaborative effort to develop a single national program.”
A final coordinated proposal is due to be adopted by the summer of 2012.