EDF applauds California for adopting new landmark standards to cut tailpipe emissions

Program will protect economy, cut climate pollution and protect health

January 27, 2012
Contact: 

Contact: Lori Sinsley, lsinsley@edf.org, 415.293.6097

(SACRAMENTO, CA) -- Environmental Defense Fund applauds California for adopting a strong suite of standards that are expected to drive innovations in advanced vehicle technologies that help cut air pollution and save consumers money.

The state’s Air Resources Board (CARB) today unanimously approved an Advanced Clean Cars program in part to reduce emissions for model years 2017 through 2025. When the standards are fully implemented in 2025, new vehicles would emit 34 percent fewer global warming gases and 75 percent fewer smog-forming emissions.

"EDF applauds California’s leadership in adopting these standards that will cut dangerous air pollution, create new jobs and drive investments in the fast-growing clean energy economy," said Erica Morehouse, a policy and legal analyst at EDF who testified in favor of the standards. "Because this program will be done in parallel with national standards, all Americans will reap the many environmental, health and economic benefits this program offers."

One set of standards—focused on California’s Low-Emission Vehicle (LEV III) program—is an important tool in helping ward off the consequences of climate change. They will also provide Californians with health and environmental benefits by reducing criteria pollutants. California estimates that smog forming pollutants that cause serious health problems will be reduced by 75 percent by 2025. These estimated reductions are expected to avoid up to 530 premature deaths by 2025. The LEV III program will also reduce greenhouse gas pollution by 52 million tons by 2025 and save $5 billion in operating costs that same year.

"This is an important first step in leading our nation toward oil independence and helping to ward off global consequences of climate change," said Morehouse.

The Advanced Clean Cars program is being carried out in coordination with the second phase of the proposed greenhouse gas and fuel economy standards announced by the Obama Administration in November. The Administration worked in collaboration with California and automakers to provide a clear regulatory future for industry and strong achievable standards for cleaner, more fuel-efficient cars and light trucks.

When combined with the 2010 standards, the clean cars program will save consumers an estimated $8,200 in fuel savings over the lifetime of a new vehicle by 2025, for a total of $1.7 trillion in national fuel savings over the life of the program. The combined standards will reduce oil consumption by an estimated 2.2 million barrels a day by 2025 – more than our 2010 oil imports from the entire Persian Gulf. They will also reduce carbon dioxide pollution by over 6 billion metric tons over the life of the program – equivalent to emissions from the United States in 2010.

###

About EDF

Environmental Defense Fund (edf.org), a leading national nonprofit organization, creates transformational solutions to the most serious environmental problems. EDF links science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships. Visit us on Twitter at @EnvDefenseFund and @EDF_CA, at our California blog, California Dream 2.0, and on Facebook at facebook.com/EnvDefenseFund.