The Biden administration is proposing a return to the Obama-era fuel-economy regulations over five years.
After that, the rules will get tougher, with the goal of getting 40 percent of American drivers into electric vehicles.
The exact numbers, which would come from the Department of Transportation and the Environmental Protection Agency, haven’t yet been finalized. They are expected to be released next week, but the Associated Press has apparently spoken to sources who have been briefed on the plan.
The Biden administration has a goal of cutting the nation’s output of greenhouse gas by at least half by 2030. The new rules would begin with the 2023 model year and use the California compromise of 2019 as a template. That agreement was reached between BMW, Ford, Honda, Volkswagen, and Volvo. That deal increases the mileage standard and is supposed to cut greenhouse gas by 3.7 percent per year.
The requirements will move to a 5 percent annual increase in mileage standards by 2025, along with a similar reduction in emissions. From 2026 on, it will push higher, though the exact number isn’t known. Estimates are 6 or 7 percent.
The EPA may also have a nonbinding statement requiring requirements to climb even more quickly after 2027, in a bid to force the auto industry to sell more zero-emission vehicles. In the meantime, the agency is asking that 40 percent of new-vehicle sales by 2030 be that of EVs.
It’s unclear if the administration aims to restore credits for EV sales, though its infrastructure proposal includes 500,000 EV charging stations and makes mentions of tax credits and rebates as part of an effort to increase EV sales.
As you no doubt know, this is all happening at a time in which American consumers are swallowing up trucks and SUVs, which are generally less fuel-efficient. Meanwhile, the market share for EVs sits at 2 percent, though analysts expect it to rise rapidly in the years to come.
Transportation-sector emissions are the single biggest American contributor to climate change.
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