54.5 MPG CAFE standard for 2025Enlarge Photo
Yesterday, the U.S. EPA had planned to release final rules on new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulations requiring automakers to achieve average fuel economies of 54.5 mpg by 2025.
But continued opposition and bitter disagreements has lead the current administration to delay the ruling.
“The rule is still undergoing interagency review and we expect that process to be completed soon,” Lynda Tran, a spokeswoman for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration told Bloomberg in an email.
Originally opposed by automakers, the rules have had a tough time getting this far in the regulatory process.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency adminstrator Lisa Jackson and President Barack Obama
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency adminstrator Lisa Jackson and President Barack ObamaEnlarge Photo
Although automakers have now agreed to the regulations, which will come into force with 2017 model year light passenger vehicles, the White House has been accused of playing hardball with automakers in order to push the regulations through.
Worse still, non-U.S. automakers like Toyota and Honda are complaining that the rulings favor U.S. car companies like Chevrolet and Ford.
While the ruling -- when it finally is given -- will likely double the efficiency of most new cars on the roads of the U.S., neither the White House, nor the EPA or the NHSTA will commit to just when the ruling will be made.
With the U.S. Election sneaking ever-closer, and Republican Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney vocal about his opposition to future CAFE requirements, this ruling may rumble on for some time to come.