December 5, 2016
Dear automotive industry leaders:
I wanted to make certain you are aware of a recent, important announcement from the EPA regarding adoption of more stringent CAFE standards for model years 2022-25. The move is not yet final, but it appears that the EPA is fast-tracking these regulations to ensure implementation before the new President takes office.
We at KAIA join the opposition to this overreach by the EPA, because we understand that these standards could slow the promising growth in our industry as well as hinder consumer choice. This move by the EPA should be especially alarming in Kentucky, the third largest producer of cars and light trucks in America and where the industry supports about 90,000 jobs.
The proposed standards, if finalized, would require that for the 2022-2025 model years, automakers must produce car and truck fleets that average more than 50 miles per gallon (MPG). As you well know, this is a very challenging standard for manufacturers. Current consumer preferences for larger cars and vehicles combined with low gas prices make the EPA goal especially onerous.
If these fuel efficiency standards are approved, every auto manufacturer and supplier will be forced to invest significant time in engineering and design for new models to meet these difficult regulations – and those costs will be passed along to consumers.
At a time when our auto industry is growing and providing thousands of jobs in Kentucky, we are dismayed that the EPA is willing to impede industry growth and interfere with consumer choices by rushing this decision.
Our state government leaders also oppose the EPA action. Energy and Environment Secretary Charles Snavely pointed out that the EPA is circumventing its own process, and said, “the rules … are subject to review by April 2018 but the EPA is proposing that the agency cut short the public comment period and issue a final decision by the end of the year that would keep the stringent standards.” Read his full comments at this link.
As the executive director of KAIA, I’m proud to be your voice on important issues like these, and I will share our positions with state and federal leaders so they understand potential impacts on your businesses and Kentucky's economy. Please contact me if I can be of further service.
KAIA Executive Director
A copy of the EPA news release is available here.