California to bid adieu to car-emissions-standards waiver? Not if state has a say

The vehicle-emissions-standards waiver that California currently has in place may get rescinded. If California has a say in the matter which, hopefully, it will, the waiver won’t be revoked.

One organization, the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), appears ready to take the fight to court if need be.

EDF President Fred Krupp in a press release issued a statement on the matter.

In his statement, Krupp not only declared that EDF will go to court to, as he put it, “‘oppose any attack on state leadership’” but, for every American, EDF “‘will work to secure protective Clean Car Standards.’”

And added: “‘America has an inspiring, bipartisan tradition of state-led progress in tackling pollution from passenger cars and trucks. …’

Evaluation and Development control room in the EPA’s Motor Vehicle Test Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan in 1973

“‘Everyone wins when we adopt strong clean car standards as our public policy. Strong clean car standards give us healthier air to breathe, help protect us from the urgent threat of climate change, and save Americans hundreds of dollars a year in gas expenses. Clean cars reduce our dependence on imported oil, bolster our national security, and help protect Americans from global crude oil price spikes. Clean cars drive the technological innovation that leads to economic prosperity and job growth.’

“‘The unlawful approach the Trump administration is reportedly planning seeks to block states from choosing clean car standards that protect millions of people from tailpipe pollution. The Trump administration would be pursuing this approach even though its own analysis shows it would cost 60,000 American jobs by 2023, even though 17 automakers and a bipartisan coalition of 24 governors have formally asked them not to, and even though there is a clear and growing need for urgent action to address the climate crisis.’”

Meanwhile, in a Sept. 18, 2019 press release the environmental justice organization Earthjustice also weighed in.

“President Trump announced via tweet earlier this morning that his administration plans to revoke the State of California’s authority to implement cleaner car standards. The move tramples on longstanding protections for the states’ abilities to set more protective clean car standards, jeopardizing the health of millions of people across the country.

“‘Today’s announcement by the Trump administration is a desperate move to buy time for an oil industry that’s unable to compete with new, cleaner technologies. It’s bad enough the administration won’t take any meaningful action to clean our air or fight the warming climate that threatens us all; now they want to prevent California and other states from filling that gap. We will challenge this rollback and make sure California’s authority stays in place.’”

That was the press release-issued statement of Earthjustice attorney Paul Cort in response to the plan. Cort is an Earthjustice attorney working on the case.

There is more from the environmental justice organization on the matter here.

There will no doubt be much more about this issue in the days, weeks and months if not years ahead.

Stay tuned.

Image above: Clark, Joe, U.S, National Archives and Records Administration collection

Published by Alan Kandel

4 thoughts on “California to bid adieu to car-emissions-standards waiver? Not if state has a say”

  1. As Environmental Protection Network member and Former Senior Engineer and Policy Advisor, EPA Office of Transportation and Air Quality (1978-2018) Jeff Alson said, “President Trump, the world’s leading climate denier, is stopping California and other states from protecting their citizens from the climate crisis. EPA granted a waiver to California allowing it to set its own car GHG standards in 2013, based on authority that California has had for 50 years under the Clean Air Act, and nothing has changed in the last six years except that the impacts of the climate crisis are more obvious. EPA has never revoked any of the 50+ waivers that it has granted to California and there is no legal basis for doing so. If the courts allow this unprecedented reversal, and the Trump EPA massively rolls back the federal Clean Car Standards, then President Trump will have done more to destroy the planet than any other president in history.”

  2. Hurray! Some common sense prevails. There is no “climate crisis” nor “AGW.” The climate may be changing as it always does (sometimes warmer, sometimes cooler), but our cars having NOTHING to do with that. Rolling back emission standards will allow cars to be build with more safety in mind. No one talks about the thousands of deaths caused by turning formerly safer vehicles into plastic death traps when involved in an auto accident. Yet MVA statistics show that has been happening ever since the lighter, more “fuel efficient” car standards were forced on the manufacturers.

    States should not be determining what national manufacturers do……..the federal government has that roll. Good to see Trump reversed the ridiculous EPA California only “waiver.” California drove all the auto manufacturers out the state years ago with its high taxes and unfriendly business environment.

  3. I believe this case will end up in the Supreme Court. If Trump is able to appoint another Supreme Court Justice before the 2020 election, then California will most likely lose the case. Even with the existing Supreme Court, California probably has no better than a 50-50 chance of winning the case.

  4. Trump as usual is being his normal Ignorant [expletive] self. That the weather isn’t changing and that it is getting warmer is only something someone ignorant would say. Yes the global weather follows a pattern but they are getting longer quicker because we are giving them a substantial boost with the added carbon and other pollutants that we add world wide. When it comes to science I have yet to hear anything intelligent come out of his mouth!!!!!

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