President Obama's many focuses these days seems to be ensuring that the U.S.
has less dependence on foreign oil than it has today by time he leaves office.
The Obama administration has been working
hard with states and automakers to come to agreement on the CAFE
regulations that will govern the required fleet wide fuel economy figures in
The final standard that Obama is wanting forces a fleetwide average fuel economy of 54.5 mpg
That doesn't count heavy-duty trucks though; those types of vehicles have separate
fuel economy standards to adhere too. This week, John D. Graham, who headed
the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs from 2001-2006, said that the
Obama administration is overstating the benefits of the 54.5mpg fleetwide average.
Graham also criticized the plan to give automakers credits for building
electric vehicles and failed to take into account the impact of generating
the electricity the vehicles use. Graham also claims that Obama is overstating
the long-term benefits of the increased fuel economy standards and is
forecasting higher fuel prices than what the Energy Information Agency is
Graham is not alone in making claims that the CAFE standards aren't going to do
what the Obama administration is claiming. Rep. Darrell Issa (R, CA), Chairman
of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, went so far as to claim
that giving double credits to automakers for EVs is akin to "fudging the
numbers." Issa claims that automakers might be forced into building EVs at
the expense of clean
diesel or hybrid
Starting in 2017, automakers will be able to use credits on EVs for less
efficient vehicles in their fleet. Rep. Mike Kelly (R, PA) went so far as to
say the 54.5mpg requirement would harm consumer choice and put the future of
private transportation at risk.
picking and choosing what people are allowed to drive and not drive or
purchase," Kelly warned.
echoed that statement, adding, "[One key issue for regulators] is whether
the quest for more energy savings will inadvertently hurt consumers by causing
vehicle manufacturers to produce cars and trucks that do not satisfy customer
preferences for vehicle size, performance and/or safety.”