News and Events Involving Environmental Law, Published by Chicago Environmental Attorney Dave Scriven-Young
of Peckar & Abramson, P.C. -- (312) 881-6309

EPA and NHTSA Publish Supplemental Notice of Intent to Issue New GHG Emissions and CAFE Standards for 2017-2025 Model Year Light-Duty Vehicles

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recently published in the Federal Register a Supplemental Notice of Intent describing a joint proposal that the agencies expect to issue.  This Supplemental Notice of Intent follows a Notice of Intent to Conduct a Joint Rulemaking, about which I wrote a blog post here.

The proposal would establish a national program to reduce fuel consumption by and greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions from light-duty vehicles for model years 2017-2025. According to the agencies, these “light-duty vehicles”, which include passenger cars, SUVs, minivans, and pickup trucks, are responsible for approximately 60% of all U.S. transportation-related GHG emissions and fuel consumption.

 Under the joint rulemaking, EPA will propose GHG emissions standards under the Clean Air Act, and NHTSA will propose Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act, as amended by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.

According to the Supplemental Notice of Intent, “EPA currently intends to propose standards that would be projected to achieve, on an average industry fleet wide basis, 163 grams/mile of CO2 in model year 2025 (this would be equivalent, on a mpg-equivalent basis, to 54.5 mpg if all of the COemissions reductions were achieved with fuel economy technology). . . . NHTSA  currently intends to propose standards that would be projected to require, on an average industry fleet wide basis, 40.9 mpg in model year 2021, and 49.6 mpg in model year 2025.”

The agencies also intend to provide credits and incentives under this program “to encourage early adoption and introduction into the marketplace of advanced technologies that represent ‘game changing’ performance improvement, including electric vehicles, plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and fuel cell vehicles, and hybrid electric large pickups.”  These credits and incentives appear to be sweeteners that allowed automakers to back the new standards proposed by the agencies.

The agencies currently expect to issue a proposed rule by September 28, 2011 and a final rule by July 31, 2012.

Stay tuned to the Illinois Environmental Law Blog for more news and developments.  To set up a free initial consultation to discuss your legal matter, please contact Chicago environmental attorney Dave Scriven-Young at (312) 239-9722 or

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