America’s Freight Trucks and Buses Will Soon Use Less Fuel, Emit Less Pollution

EPA and DOT Announce Clean Trucks Proposal Today

June 19, 2015
Sharyn Stein, 202-572-3396,

(Washington, D.C. – June 19, 2015) The U.S. today announced historic new measures to improve fuel economy and reduce pollution from the nation’s freight trucks and buses.

New Clean Truck standards were proposed jointly today by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT). They will help keep Americans safe from climate change and from unhealthy air pollution, will significantly reduce our national fuel consumption, and will save money for both truckers and consumers.

“The proposed Clean Truck standards will move us miles down the road toward a cleaner, safer future,” said Fred Krupp, president of Environmental Defense Fund. “The standards will sharply reduce climate pollution from the transportation sector and will reduce America’s reliance on imported oil. This week, Pope Francis called on all of us to live up to our moral obligation to help turn back the climate threat. Today’s proposal is the latest step this Administration has taken toward meeting that obligation.”  

The proposed standards would apply to the freight trucks that transport the products we buy every day, as well as to buses and school buses, tractor-trailers, heavy-duty pickup trucks and vans, and garbage trucks. (They will not apply to passenger cars and light pickup trucks, which already have their own fuel efficiency standards.) These heavy-duty trucks use more than 125 million gallons of fuel every day and emit nearly 450 million metric tons of climate pollution annually.

The proposed standards will apply to new heavy-duty trucks for model years 2021 through 2027, and new trailers built in model years 2018 to 2027. Over the life of the program, the new standards will:

    • Reduce climate pollution by one billion metric tons
    • Reduce fuel consumption by 1.8 billion barrels of oil
    • Save truckers 170 billion dollars in fuel costs
    • Provide health and other benefits to society of 230 billion dollars (benefits that will outweigh costs by a factor of 10 to 1) 

The standards will also help the average American household save money because shipping companies can lower prices if they are paying less for fuel. The average household should save $150 per year by 2030 under the proposed standards, and more in following years.

Today’s proposal is the second phase of standards for heavy-duty trucks. The successful first ever heavy-duty fuel economy and GHG program was finalized in 2011 with broad support from truck manufacturers, labor groups, consumers, security groups, and health and environmental organizations. 

EPA and DOT will now ask for public comments on the proposed standards. They are likely to be finalized in 2016.

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