The California-US brawl over auto emissions has begun – Los Angeles Times

Posted: Saturday, March 18, 2017

U.S. automakers consistently have been great at grousing about safety and environmental regulations; in fact, that may be the only thing they’ve consistently been great at. Last week, this talent was again on display as they achieved one of their cherished goals — rolling back emissions and mileage standards set by the Obama administration in its final days.

During an appearance in Detroit, President Trump announced that he would reverse the Obama decision, allowing mileage and emissions standards for 2017 to 2025 to be reconsidered over the next year by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao hailed the move as a boon to the economy. “These standards are costly for automakers and the American people,” declared Pruitt, a former Oklahoma attorney general and one of the best friends the oil industry ever had in government.

The standards at issue actually were set not by two agencies but three. It didn’t escape anyone’s notice that the third wasn’t present at Trump’s show. That’s because it’s the California Air Resources Board, which believes the auto standards are not only reasonable but crucial for preserving clean air and combating climate change.

With the advent of Trump, California is the only party to the standards that still takes them seriously. Indeed, the state wasted no time in drawing its own line in the sand, filing a motion in federal appeals court the day before the Trump announcement, lodging notice that it intends to defend them. (The motion was filed in a lawsuit brought by the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers challenging the standards.)


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