Reports indicate that the Trump administration has ended negotiations with California over the administration’s plans to roll back vehicle fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards. This indicates that the administration is likely to revoke a waiver that permits California and other states to enact more stringent standards than the federal government.
The fact that the Trump administration has stopped talking to California officials about the clean cars standards is an ominous sign. It signals President Donald Trump’s determination to undo the standards – which have saved consumers more than $70 billion at the gas pump and cut dangerous climate pollution – and revoke the California waiver, which allows that state, 13 others and the District of Columbia to protect their citizens from harmful tailpipe pollution.
Rolling back the clean car standards is reckless. Doing so threatens not only the lives and pocketbooks of every American but also the long-established ability of states to protect their residents from pollution.
While the Trump administration doubles down on dangerous policies to benefit the auto industry and big oil, more leaders are stepping up to defend the clean car standards. On Wednesday, more than 200 state lawmakers from 14 states called on the auto industry to oppose the rollback and instead support the lifesaving and money-saving standards.
The industry and administration should heed their call and preserve the standards, which constitute one of the most effective programs we have to combat climate change.