The new fuel economy standards announced in August for light trucks have been in the works for years but are too meager to affect oil prices now or in the future. But they are carefully designed to appease automakers, who resist innovation, and the oil companies, which are raking in record profits. The fact that the largest SUVs, including Hummers, will be exempt from any fuel standards speaks volumes about this administration’s priorities.
In addition to these meager standards, in the recently enacted energy bill, Congress last summer enacted an extension of the alternative fuel credits for auto manufacturers until 2014, even if consumers never use the alternative fuel (generally ethanol). This gives manufacturers a huge gift - a reduction of almost 1 mpg in the fuel economy standards.
Public Citizen submitted comments denouncing the new standards this December. Follow this link to read Public Citizen’s comments: http://www.citizen.org/documents/2005_FE_Comments.pdf