WASHINGTON –President Obama on Friday set a historic agreement with 13 major automakers to pursue the next phase in the Administration’s national vehicle program, increasing fuel economy to 54.5 miles per gallon for cars and light-duty trucks by Model Year 2025.
The President was joined by Ford, GM, Chrysler, BMW, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar/Land Rover, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota and Volvo – which together account for over 90 percent of all vehicles sold in the U.S. – as well as the United Auto Workers (UAW), and the State of California, who “were integral to developing this agreement,” the White House stated.
Photo | Leo King
Already fuel-efficient vehicles are also affected by Obama’s efficiency goal.
“This agreement on fuel standards represents the single most important step we’ve ever taken as a nation to reduce our dependence on foreign oil,” said Obama.
He added, “Most of the companies here today were part of an agreement we reached two years ago to raise the fuel efficiency of their cars over the next five years. We’ve set an aggressive target and the companies are stepping up to the plate. By 2025, the average fuel economy of their vehicles will nearly double to almost 55 miles per gallon.”
Building on the agreement for model years 2012-2016 vehicles, which will raise fuel efficiency to 35.5 mpg, the next round of standards will require performance equivalent to 54.5 mpg or 163 grams per mile of CO2 for cars and light-duty trucks by Model Year 2025.
“Achieving the goals of this agreement will rely on innovative technologies and manufacturing that will spur economic growth and create high-quality domestic jobs in cutting edge industries across America,” a White House spokesman said.
These programs, combined with the model year 2011 light truck standard, represent the first meaningful update to fuel efficiency standards in three decades and span model years 2011 to 2025.
“Together, they will save American families $1.7 trillion dollars in fuel costs, and by 2025 result in an average fuel savings of over $8,000 per vehicle. Additionally, these programs will dramatically cut the oil we consume, saving a total of 12 billion barrels of oil, and by 2025 reduce oil consumption by 2.2 million barrels a day – as much as half of the oil we import from OPEC every day,” Obamas said.
The standards also curb carbon pollution, cutting more than 6 billion metric tons of greenhouse gas over the life of the program – more than the amount of carbon dioxide emitted by the U.S. last year.
The oil savings, consumer, and environmental benefits of this comprehensive program are detailed in a new report entitled Driving Efficiency: Cutting Costs for Families at the Pump and Slashing Dependence on Oil, which the Administration released Friday.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT) have worked closely with auto manufacturers, the state of California, environmental groups, and other stakeholders for several months to ensure these standards are achievable, cost-effective and preserve consumer choice, the White House spokesman said.
The program would increase the stringency of standards for passenger cars by an average of 5 percent each year. The stringency of standards for pick-ups and other light-duty trucks would increase an average of 3.5 percent annually for the first five model years and an average of 5 percent annually for the last four model years of the program, to account for the unique challenges associated with this class of vehicles.
“These standards will help spur economic growth, protect the environment, and strengthen our national security by reducing America’s dependence on foreign oil,” said Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. “Working together, we are setting the stage for a new generation of clean vehicles.”