By Nick Goldstein, vice president of regulatory affairs & assistant general counsel, ARTBA
President Donald Trump ordered the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) March 15 to begin a one-year review of regulations aimed at increasing the fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards for new cars and trucks. The standards were a centerpiece of the climate change agenda of President Barack Obama.
ARTBA has consistently urged federal agencies to “acknowledge and attempt to mitigate the adverse effects” the rule will have on Highway Trust Fund (HTF) revenues by reducing motor fuel consumption. A 2011 ARTBA analysis of then-proposed fuel economy standards noted their implementation could lead to the loss of more than $71 billion in highway and transit improvements by 2025 due to declining fuel tax revenues.
ARTBA has further argued that infrastructure investments and improved traffic flow are key components in reducing vehicle emissions and improving fuel economy. Protecting the purchasing power of the HTF is crucial to accomplishing these goals. ARTBA will encourage the Trump administration to consider this in their review.