The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) will hear testimony about their proposed greenhouse gas and fuel efficiency standards for the nation’s freight trucks and buses in Chicago on Thursday.
The proposed clean trucks standards will build on standards finalized in 2011, which apply to model year 2014-to-2018 trucks. The government terms that first phase of standards as a success, with the demand for more efficient trucks. Model year 2014 heavy-duty trucks saw the highest sales since 2005.
The proposed standards will apply to new heavy-duty trucks for model years 2021 through 2027, and new trailers built in model years 2018 to 2027.
In testimony before the panel, Environmental Defense Fund’s Jason Mathers said that while the standards represent an important step forward, they must be strengthened to spur more extensive deployment of the cost-effective technologies that are available. “Those technologies will enable the nation to secure the climate, health, economic and security benefits it needs to protect our communities and to build a prosperous clean energy economy.
“Freight trucks are one of the single-fastest growing sources of climate disrupting emissions,” said Mathers in his testimony. “Leaders in business and the environmental community alike recognize that rigorous well designed standards can save fleets and families in fuel costs, can reduce dangerous pollutants and can strengthen our global competitiveness by spurring the deployment of advanced technologies.”
EPA and DOT estimate that, over the life of the program, the proposed standards will:
- Reduce climate pollution by 1 billion tons
- Cut fuel use by 1.8 billion barrels of oil
- Save truck owners $170 billion in fuel costs
The proposed standards will also save the average American household $150 a year by 2030.