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Policy:

Trump is at war on the environment and on the state of California.  California has legislation which would impose more stringent emissions standards and increases  the efficiency standard of miles per gallon to 54.5 for autos and light trucks.  As California goes, so it is said, so goes the nation.  Forty percent of the US auto market resides in states or DC which have adopted the California standards.  Trump has made federal regulations which would lower the mpg to 37 and force all of the country to one standard.  It would also revoke a waiver allowing California, and other states and DC, to set their own standards.

There is a legal case challenging the administration’s mandate and several automakers are intervening in that dispute.  GM, Chrysler Fiat, and Toyota all support the administration’s rollback of standards.  Interestingly, these three automakers have dramatic records regarding these standards.  GM and Chrysler-Fiat are in the very bottom of 13 companies ranked for efficiency and emission.  Toyota is fifth from the bottom but is the only company to have worsened their ratings between 2012-2017.  Ford, VW, BMW, and Honda have made their own agreement with California to impose strict standards matching the state’s.  The group of manufacturer’s supporting the administration’s rollback claim to do so because the federal government is promoting “one national program,” and they maintain it will make regulation and enforcement easier.

Analysis:

Transportation, including air travel, accounts for the biggest portion of carbon dioxide emissions.  Attention to emissions standards and efficiency is essential since the International Panel of Climate Change (IPCC) declared that if climate change is not significantly reduced by 2030 irrevocable damage to the ecosystem will occur.  They suggest aiming for zero emissions by 2030.  The global elite, the 20% of global citizens accounting for 70% of emissions, are essential to mounting a viable effort to reduce the effects of climate change.  Instead of declaring war on California, and its leadership in imposing stringent emissions standards, the federal government should be adopting the same standards for use nation-wide.

Photo by veeterzy

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