Statement By Eric Haxthausen Of Environmental Defense On Bush Administration's Fuel Economy Proposal

"Although structural reform is an interesting idea that deserves consideration, the new proposal from the Bush Administration on CAFE fuel efficiency standards for SUVs and light trucks is almost embarrassingly inadequate in terms their impacts on U.S. oil consumption. And in the midst of record-breaking crude oil and gasoline prices, continuing weakness of fuel standards will do little to help American drivers at the pump. We can and should do much better. A cost-benefit analysis by Environmental Defense indicates that even under very conservative assumptions, the government should increase SUV and other light truck standards by at least 0.7 to 1 mpg each year, which could save more than 1.5 million barrels of oil per day by 2020, about as much as currently imported from Saudi Arabia

"With US cars and light trucks accounting for 20% of US greenhouse gas emissions, roughly the equivalent to Japan's total emissions, the continuing weakness of fuel economy standards also fails to address the growing threat of climate change."

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