US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg unveiled
“When these standards take effect, Americans buying a new vehicle will spend less on gas than they would have if we hadn’t taken this step,” Buttigieg said at a Friday news conference in Washington, DC. “We estimate that today’s rule will prevent 5.5 trillion pounds of carbon dioxide from going into our atmosphere between now and 2050.”
By 2026, the average new vehicle in the US will get 49 miles of travel per gallon of gasoline (mpg) under the revised Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards, Buttigieg said. The new standards will increase fuel efficiency by 8 percent annually for model years 2024–2025 and 10 percent annually for model year 2026. They will also increase the estimated fleetwide average by nearly 10 miles per gallon for model year 2026, relative to model year 2021.
“That means if you’re filling up four times a month, that would become three times a month by model year 2026 based on those averages,” Buttigieg said. “And, of course, that would save a typical American household hundreds of dollars.”
The new standards, which were first unveiled last year, are part of a larger effort by President Joe Biden to reverse the rules put in place by Donald Trump and return to the Obama-era fuel economy standards from nearly a decade ago.
Last August, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
The Environmental Protection Agency,
Buttigieg also called on Congress to pass Biden’s stalled Build Back Better package, which would enact a slate of environmental initiatives, including tax cuts for new electric vehicle purchases. “That would take, for example, the American-made electric pickup trucks we saw a lot of ads for during the Super Bowl, from about 40,000 bucks down into the 20s,” he said. “We could do that through policy that is available right now.”
The need for new EV tax credits speaks to the problem with the cars on America’s roads today, which is that many of them are old. There are around 280 million cars and trucks on the road in the US today, only 3 percent of which are electric.
Americans typically buy 16–17 million cars every year, which would mean it would take roughly 16 years of EV-only sales to completely replace all of the gas cars currently on the road. Also, we would need a total ban on the sale and use of gas cars, and so far, the Biden administration doesn’t appear willing to do that.
The rules would also keep in place the so-called