Auto Dealers Group Wrong About How EPA Considers Costs in Vehicle Efficiency Standards

Amy Sinden

Sept. 29, 2011

This post was written by Member Scholar Amy Sinden and Policy Analyst Lena Pons.

Last week, the National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) sponsored a fly-in lobby day to support an amendment that would strip EPA of the authority to set greenhouse gas emission standards for passenger cars and light trucks for 2017-2025. The amendment, offered earlier this year by Rep. Steve Austria (R-Ohio), would prevent EPA from spending any money to implement the 2017-2025 standards. NADA wants the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to have sole responsibility for regulating vehicle efficiency. Dealers want NHTSA to run the show because, they claim, EPA does not give adequate consideration to costs of the standards.

One problem: the auto dealers have completely misrepresented how EPA and NHTSA’s joint standards work. In fact, EPA, just like NHTSA, kept considerations of cost and technological feasibility front and center in developing the joint fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for 2012-2016. There is no reason to think they will approach the 2017-2025 standards differently. 

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