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EPA Proposes New Emissions Standards for Light-Duty and Medium-Duty Vehicles

On April 12, 2023, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a proposal for new multi-pollutant emissions standards targeting light-duty and medium-duty vehicles starting with the model year 2027. The proposal outlines a gradual phase-in of the standards over model years 2027 through 2032. This post provides an overview of the proposed standards and their potential implications.

The EPA's proposed standards build upon the agency's existing federal greenhouse gas emissions standards for passenger cars and light trucks for model years 2023 through 2026. The new proposal aims to further reduce emissions of harmful air pollutants, such as particulate matter, nitrogen oxides, and volatile organic compounds, from vehicles in the specified categories.

According to the EPA, the proposed standards have several key objectives:

  • Reducing climate pollution: The standards seek to decrease emissions of greenhouse gases, which contribute to climate change.

  • Improving public health: Lowering harmful air pollutants from vehicles is expected to reduce the incidence of respiratory and cardiovascular illnesses associated with poor air quality.

  • Saving drivers money: The EPA anticipates that the standards will lead to reduced fuel and maintenance costs for vehicle owners over the lifespan of vehicles that comply with the new standards.

The EPA has emphasized that the proposed standards are intended to be achievable and practical for vehicle manufacturers. The gradual phase-in period is designed to give manufacturers time to adapt to the new requirements and invest in the development of cleaner vehicle technologies, including electric and hybrid models.

The proposal is part of the EPA's ongoing efforts to regulate emissions from the transportation sector, which is a significant source of air pollution in the United States. The proposed standards reflect the EPA's commitment to addressing environmental and public health concerns associated with vehicle emissions.

The EPA has made available several resources related to the proposed rule, including the full text of the proposed rule, a fact sheet, a draft regulatory impact analysis, and an illustrative air quality analysis. These documents provide additional details about the proposal and its anticipated effects.

As part of the regulatory development process, the EPA plans to hold a virtual public hearing on the proposed rule. The hearing is scheduled to take place on May 9 - 11, 2023. The EPA encourages interested parties to review the proposal and submit comments during the public comment period.

In summary, the EPA's proposal for multi-pollutant emissions standards for model years 2027 and later aims to reduce harmful air pollutant emissions from light-duty and medium-duty vehicles. The proposed standards are part of a broader effort by the EPA to address environmental and public health challenges associated with vehicle emissions, and they are designed to be achievable for manufacturers while delivering potential benefits to the public​.



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