Over 100 Trade Groups Urge Biden to Reconsider New EPA Rules

Wim De Gent
By Wim De Gent
July 12, 2023Businessshare
Over 100 Trade Groups Urge Biden to Reconsider New EPA Rules
Trucks sit idle as they block the entrance to a container terminal at the Port of Oakland in Oakland, Calif., on July 21, 2022. (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

In a letter to President Joe Biden, the American Petroleum Institute (API) joined over 100 trade groups representing the oil, farming, and transportation sector to urge the administration to reverse course on the latest tailpipe emission proposals.

The signatories, which collectively employ millions of Americans, have significant concerns over the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) latest proposals to reduce tailpipe emissions for all light, medium, and heavy-duty vehicles.

“We share the goal of reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions across the broader economy and, specifically, those from energy production, transportation, and use by society,” the letter opens, before addressing its signatories’ main complaint.

“EPA’s proposals inhibit the marketplace from identifying the most efficient, lowest cost opportunities to reduce GHG emissions from vehicles and greatly restrict consumer choice. We are concerned that such a prescriptive policy is not in the best interest of the consumer or of U.S. energy and economic security.”

The letter (pdf) referred to two studies by the EPA documenting strides already made in terms of tailpipe emissions.

“According to the EPA, fuel and vehicle technologies have reduced emissions from common pollutants by roughly 99 percent in both light- and heavy-duty vehicles and buses, and CO2 emissions from light-duty internal combustion engine vehicles have decreased 25 percent since model year 2004.”

The letter highlights alternative avenues to further reduce GHG emissions in addition to electric vehicle (EV) adoption.

“Improved crop yield, innovative biofuel and refined product processing, and manufacturing efficiency tied with carbon capture each represent promising advancements for current liquid and gaseous fuels to continue to accelerate emissions reductions,” the letter states.

When it comes to heavy-duty vehicles, the letter questions EPA’s narrow focus on pushing the market toward EVs to achieve compliance with its emission proposals, accusing the EPA of not considering the achievable GHG emissions reduction by accelerating the turnover of existing fleets to advanced diesel technology and using more renewable and alternative fuels.

“A diversified portfolio of vehicle and fuel technologies that meets the multitude of transportation needs of Americans and makes meaningful GHG reductions can be achieved while also allowing new zero-emission vehicles, and specifically battery EV technologies to advance,” the signatories wrote.

The more than 100 signatories include state and national agricultural groups, including corn growers, farm bureaus, and ethanol producers; plus petroleum marketers, fuel dealers, oil refineries, convenience stores, and truck stop chains, among others.

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