Proposed New Fuel Economy Labels Will Help Americans Save Gas, Save Money, Cut Pollution

August 30, 2010
Contact: 

Contact:
Vickie Patton, 720-837-6239, vpatton@edf.org
Sharyn Stein, 202-572-3396, sstein@edf.org

(Washington D.C. – August 30, 2010) Plans to redesign fuel economy labels for cars will help Americans save both money and gas, and protect the planet at the same time, said Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).

EDF praised an announcement today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) that they plan to overhaul fuel economy labels for cars and light trucks for the first time in 30 years. EDF encourages Americans to view the proposed new labels and offer their comments.

"Passenger cars and trucks are responsible for about 44 percent of all U.S. oil consumption, and for almost 20 percent of the pollution that causes climate change," said Vickie Patton, General Counsel for Environmental Defense Fund. "Truth in labeling empowers Americans to make choices that will save our families money, reduce our dependence on imported oil, and cut heat-trapping greenhouse gases."

EPA and DOT are proposing two different label designs and are gathering public input on the choices. The proposed new labels would have expanded information for car buyers, including ratings on fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions. One of the proposals would feature a letter grade based on fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions performance, and an estimate of cost savings at the gas pump over five years compared with the average gasoline powered vehicle.

The goal is to make it easier for consumers to compare all types of vehicles, including new technologies like electric vehicles, and to help buyers make more informed choices when they're shopping for new passenger cars or trucks.

"Americans want to address our addiction to oil, to fight climate change – and to spend less money at the gas pump," said Patton. "It can be difficult to sift through all the technical and scientific information about clean cars and fuel economy, and you shouldn't need a Ph.D. to buy a car. These proposed new labels will make it much easier for consumers to comparison shop. With clearer labeling, consumers can make smart choices that protect our economy, our security and our environment."