Obama Demands Higher Efficiency for Power Plants, Heavy Trucks
June 26, 2013 1:59 PM
comment(s) - last by
President also calls for increases on federal spending for CNG vehicles, vehicle research, and EV tax credits
At a speech at
in the nation's capitol, President Barack Obama's (D) message to automakers was simple -- "told you so."
I. Obama Crows Over Fuel Economy Victories
The fuel standards that we put in place just a few years ago didn’t cripple automakers. The American auto industry retooled, and today, our automakers are selling the best cars in the world at a faster rate than they have in five years — with more hybrid, more plug-in, more fuel-efficient cars.
The old rules may say we can’t protect our environment and promote economic growth at the same time, but in America, we’ve always used new technologies — we’ve used science; we’ve used research and development and discovery to make the old rules obsolete.
The Obama administration is celebrating a win in which it convinced automakers to adhere to signficant increases to the
CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standard
Under President George W. Bush (R) and the 2007 Congress, the CAFE standard -- which covers light trucks and sedans -- was
scheduled to hit 35 mpg by 2020
. President Obama first succeeded in
bumping that target to 34.1 mpg by 2016
after initially asking for
35.5 mpg by 2016
Following that success, the President's team pushed for a much higher standard for 2025 --
as high as 62 mpg
. Automakers said
that increase would "kill" the auto industry
, but eventually begrudgingly
caved to a target of 54.5 mpg
The result is a mixed bag -- customers will save thousands of dollars at the pump over the lifetime of their vehicles (the exact amount is dependent on the price of fuel), but will pay $2,059 USD more for a new truck and $1,726 USD more for a new car on average (critics contend
the true price increase will be at least twice that
). And automakers have to swallow an estimated $200B USD in costs for developing advanced fuel efficiency technologies.
In his speech, the President also plugged General Motors Comp. (
a bailout recipient
-- for making a climate change pledge. The President remarked, "More than 500 businesses, including giants like GM and Nike, issued a Climate Declaration, calling action on climate change 'one of the great economic opportunities of the 21st century.'"
the Chevy Volt
plug-in electric vehicle that
both President Obama
and former President George HW Bush
are big fans of.
II. More Regulation Ahead?
Emboldened by the concessions that he has already won from the industry, the President proposed more regulation in his speech -- including a fresh round of CAFE targets for
heavy duty trucks
. The heavy-duty truck segment (which includes semis, garbage trucks, buses and three-quarter-ton pickups) was first regulated under President Bush's Energy Act of 2007, which calls for a 20 percent increase in average fuel economy by 2018.
The standard refresh would go into effect by 2018, and force that vehicle segment -- which typically features inherently poor fuel economy -- to continue more yearly bumps in efficiency. Despite the gains since 2007, heavy-duty vehicles are still the second largest source of emissions in the transportation sector, according to the White House.
President Obama was new fuel economy targets for heavy duty trucks.
[Image Source: Jason Mick/DailyTech]
Other automotive highlights of the speech included a reiteration of the President's call to
bump the electric vehicle tax credit to $10,000 USD
, a demand for
more federal advanced vehicle research funding
, and a push to give new tax credits
compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles
The President also called for regulations to limit the amount of carbon power plants can emit -- regulations that could force coal and oil burning plants to purchase expensive carbon capture and storage systems.
The speech compared these changes to the introduction of the federally forced introduction of the catalytic converter in 1970 (via the 1970 expansion of the
Clean Air Act
to cover automobiles), which critics complained would damage the industry. He remarked:
At the time when we passed the Clean Air Act to try to get rid of some of this smog, some of the same doomsayers were saying new pollution standards will decimate the auto industry. Guess what — it didn’t happen. Our air got cleaner.
The President threatened the oil industry that he
wouldn't approve the Keystone oil pipeline
unless it cooperated with emissions improvements, remarking that the pipeline would be approved "only if this project does not significantly exacerbate the problem of carbon pollution."
The President wants stricter emissions standards for power plants. [Image Source: Reuters]
At least some of the President's demands are unlikely to be fulfilled given the Republican control of the House. Thus far Republicans in Congress have fought efforts to bump tax credits for EVs/plug-ins and efforts to increase vehicle research funding.
White House on YouTube
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: He is right....
6/28/2013 8:04:28 AM
It must be hard trying to be a liberal conservative.
If I'm not mistaken the Original Democrat party was huge on taking from others and giving to the Union, especially farmers (the poor) who were recognized as the Unions backbone. But this was through the idea of growth through expansion, not unlike the same time period expansions of the European empires of the time. The early history of the party advocated Manifest Destiny and opposed centralized banking, which was allowing currency to have wildly different values between transactions with little common basis in (at the time) gold or silver standard.
I can't say that either party have ever been a truly fiscally responsible one. The early Republican party was keen on higher tariffs, and running a larger national debt, as well as government aid to expanding economic infrastructure, both agriculturally and industrially.
One of the few things that hasn't changed much is that the Republican party is still viewed as a more or less pietistic Christian Party, where the Democratic Party seems to be less and less concerned with religious piety at all.
And to be fair the current Conservative view might be more of, if I can afford it, I should be able to buy and use whatever I desire. If I can't afford it, I'm not that worried about it anyway, or I can wait until I can afford it.
Where a slight adjustment to the current Liberal view might be if I can't afford it, and feel I'm entitled to it, I should regulate it and disperse it so that everyone can enjoy the regulated product now, even if it's not quite what everyone else wants.
"It seems as though my state-funded math degree has failed me. Let the lashings commence." -- DailyTech Editor-in-Chief Kristopher Kubicki
Bob Lutz Says Ditch CAFE, Raise Gas Taxes $0.25 USD Per Year
April 19, 2013, 10:58 AM
Obama Calls for 75% Budget Increase for Vehicle Research
April 11, 2013, 11:00 AM
Obama to Request $2B USD for EV, Hybrid Research; Tax Credit for LNG Trucks
March 15, 2013, 11:48 AM
August to be Chevrolet Volt's Best Sales Month Yet
August 30, 2012, 8:59 AM
White House Finalizes 54.5 MPG CAFE Standards for 2017-2025 Model Years
August 28, 2012, 2:52 PM
2016 Cadillac CTS-V Packs 640 hp Punch with 200 mph Reach
January 23, 2015, 3:25 PM
BMW Testing Tech to Allow Users to Auto-Park, Summon Cars Via Smartwatch
December 16, 2014, 9:30 AM
Lamborghini Offers Up $6,000 Leather-Bound Android Smartphone
December 12, 2014, 3:12 PM
Quick Note: GM Teases Next Generation Chevrolet Volt
November 20, 2014, 3:26 PM
Audi is Latest to Step Into the Hydrogen Game, Delivers A7 Sportback h-tron quattro
November 19, 2014, 1:41 PM
Toyota’s Mirai Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle Priced from $57,500 in the U.S.
November 18, 2014, 10:23 AM
Most Popular Articles
Under the Hood: How DirectX 11.3 and 12 Will Supercharge Windows 10 Gaming
January 23, 2015, 12:34 PM
Microsoft Shows Off Latest Windows 10 Build, Preps it for Next Week Release
January 21, 2015, 2:57 PM
BlackBerry CEO Claims Devs are Violating Net Neutrality by Not Supporting BB10
January 22, 2015, 4:37 PM
2016 Cadillac CTS-V Packs 640 hp Punch with 200 mph Reach
January 23, 2015, 3:25 PM
Will Google Become America's Fifth Major Carrier?
January 22, 2015, 12:42 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Sceptre Airs 27", 120 Hz. 1080p Monitor/HDTV w/ 5 ms Response Time for $220
Dec 3, 2014, 10:32 PM
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2015 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information