EPA Emissions Standards Will Strengthen the U.S. in the Global Clean Vehicle Race

Apr 12, 2023 10:28 AM ET
Electric vehicle being charged

April 12, 2023 /3BL Media/ - Ceres welcomes the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s newly proposed greenhouse gas emissions standards for light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicles as crucial steps toward achieving national climate goals and further capitalizing on the opportunity to establish the U.S. as a global leader in the clean energy transition.

“As the clean vehicle transition gains speed across the U.S., the EPA’s proposed greenhouse gas emissions standards will be crucial to harnessing and steering this momentum to meet our national climate, economic, and equity goals,” said Michael Kodransky, senior director of clean transportation, Ceres. “Consumers and companies alike are eager to transition to zero-emission cars, vans, and trucks to reduce their fuel and maintenance costs and to benefit from federal and state incentives. Strong standards will set clear expectations for automakers and their customers. We urge the EPA to finalize the most ambitious standards.”

The EPA’s proposed light- and medium-duty vehicle emissions standards, which will be finalized after a public feedback period, would spur electric vehicle production and sales by effectively ensuring that zero-emission vehicles account for as much as two-thirds of new vehicle sales by 2032.

The EPA is also considering new emissions standards for heavy-duty vehicles, such as large trucks, that would help meet the growing market demand for zero-emission commercial vehicles. A 2022 survey of the Corporate Electric Vehicle Alliance — a coalition of major U.S. businesses organized by Ceres to accelerate electric commercial vehicle deployment — found that member companies are planning to order more than 330,000 zero-emission vehicles within the next five years and that nearly all members would consider changing manufacturers to purchase them.

“Between the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021, and various state laws and policies, the U.S. is well-positioned to become the best place in the world to build and buy electric vehicles and their components,” said Zach Friedman, director of federal policy, Ceres. “Strong federal vehicle emissions standards are the crucial next step to put the U.S. at the forefront of the competition to lead this historic transition, and America’s consumers, companies, and workers all stand to benefit. We applaud the administration for today’s announcement and encourage the EPA to adopt the most ambitious version of these standards.”

Transportation is the leading cause of climate and air pollution in the U.S. and zero-emission vehicles are critical to limiting the impacts of both. While passenger vehicles represent the single largest source of transportation emissions, medium- and heavy-duty vehicles have an outsized impact, accounting for more than 20% of transportation-related emissions despite representing about 5% of vehicles on U.S. roads. Rapid growth in zero-emission vehicle sales would dramatically reduce both greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change and harmful air pollution that especially affects communities located near highways, busy roads, and major freight centers.

About Ceres 

Ceres is a nonprofit organization working with the most influential capital market leaders to solve the world’s greatest sustainability challenges. Through our powerful networks and global collaborations of investors, companies and nonprofits, we drive action and inspire equitable market-based and policy solutions throughout the economy to build a just and sustainable future. For more information, visit ceres.org and follow @CeresNews.

Media Contact: Helen Booth-Tobin