Washington, DC—The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) released the following statement from Avi Mersky, senior transportation researcher, in response to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) proposed updates today to standards for greenhouse gas and nitrogen oxide emissions from heavy-duty vehicles:
“Vehicle manufacturers, fleet owners, and states have made great strides toward transitioning to electric trucks and buses. The Biden administration has a key opportunity in this rulemaking to leverage that progress to maximize the climate impact of truck and bus standards.
“The plan today doesn’t take advantage of the dramatic advances in electric trucks, and EPA will need to strengthen it to accelerate the transition while maintaining progress on conventional vehicles. We can’t leave tools on the table.
“Under this proposal, petroleum-fueled trucks may stop improving, or even worsen, in fuel efficiency as more electric trucks are sold, potentially delaying the emissions reduction benefit of the technology. The proposal would continue to grant automakers a ‘multiplier’ on credits earned for selling electric vehicles that is greatly in excess of actual emission reductions, allowing fleetwide emissions to increase.
“In the final rule, EPA should eliminate the ‘multipliers’ that over-credit electric vehicles’ emissions reductions, and increase the stringency of the standards to take advantage of the substantial growth in electric vehicles’ market share.
"Concerning the proposed standard for nitrogen oxides, the strongest possible final standard for these pollutants will be critical to protecting public health, particularly in disadvantaged communities that disproportionately experience heavy-truck traffic."
ACEEE has previously shown how EPA could boost the impact of truck and bus standards by updating them in this rulemaking to leverage the swift increase in electric vehicles.