With the threat of a rollback looming, two new reports from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) show that federal fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards for vehicles are working. Furthermore, new models, such as those on display at the Detroit Auto Show this week, show that additional gains are within reach.
The first-ever Run on Less roadshow demonstrated just how fuel-efficient a tractor-trailer can be in real-world operation. Seven Class 8 Freightliner, International, and Volvo tractor trucks drove 50,000 miles across the country, carrying more than 55,000 lbs. of goods on average, and converged in Atlanta on Sunday for the grand finale.
A key element of the “Phase 2” heavy-duty vehicle fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions standards adopted last fall was the program’s inclusion of trailers for the first time. That addition alone will deliver a cost-effective 7% improvement in tractor-trailer fuel efficiency.
The Trump administration is reportedly launching a rollback of vehicle efficiency standards that greatly benefit the US economy. These standards save consumers money, create jobs, help reduce US reliance on foreign oil, and lower carbon emissions.
Washington, DC—Looking for a show-stopping present for that special someone? Love the environment - and your car? Want to know which model year 2017 vehicle has the smallest environmental footprint? This Valentine’s Day, the answers to these questions are revealed in the 20th annual environmental ratings at greenercars.org, released by the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy.
Heavy-duty vehicle fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions standards are a signature program of the Obama administration, initially adopted in 2011. The Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) adopted a second phase of the program last month, built on the success of the Phase 1 program. Phases 1 and 2 together will reduce fuel consumption of new heavy-duty vehicles by 25-48%, depending on vehicle type, between model years 2010 and 2027.
Recent press accounts of automobile fuel economy trends express concern that light trucks won’t be able to keep up with rising fuel economy (CAFE) standards.
Over the past 40 years, light-duty vehicles in the United States have achieved remarkable gains in both fuel economy and performance. The graph below shows average miles per gallon, power-to-weight ratio, and 0-to-60 acceleration time of new cars and light trucks since the late 1970s. Fuel economy improved dramatically from 1975 to 1987, driven by the original Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, which were adopted in 1975 in response to the 1973 oil embargo by Arab states.
New fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions standards for heavy-duty vehicles and engines, proposed this summer, have just run the gauntlet of public comment on their way to final adoption next year. As proposed, these Phase 2 standards would provide major gains in fuel efficiency for heavy-duty vehicles by 2027.
Recently, the Department of Energy (DOE) and the White House Office of Science and Technology released the second Quadrennial Technology Review, or QTR. The 489 page tome bears resemblance to many other government reports that are too often relegated to the TL;DR file—too long; didn’t read. That would be unfortunate for those of us who care about the future of energy efficiency technologies.