As John Broder explained in the NY Times on Wednesday, there is a serious battle taking place within the Obama Administration over meeting the needs for environmental protection, with EPA administrator Lisa Jackson on one side and political strategists on the other. Withdrawal of EPA’s ground level ozone rule was a keen disappointment to environmentalists. Where the EPA has been able to make progress is in the area of vehicle emissions.
With the introductory phrase ‘We Can’t Wait’, on November 16 the Obama administration officially proposed strengthening fuel efficiency and pollution standards for passenger cars and trucks to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. The measure builds on a historic step taken last year to raise vehicle efficiency to 35.5 mpg in 2016 and begin reducing tailpipe carbon pollution levels. The newly proposed standards also reduce carbon emissions to 163 grams per mile in 2025.