Obama administration seeks extended fuel efficiency regulations


Perched at a grocery distribution warehouse in Maryland earlier this week, President Obama announced that the administration seeks to extend fuel efficiency regulations for medium- and heavy-duty trucks for models beyond 2018. The second phase of the fuel efficiency standards will again target trucks to reduce air pollution.

The 2011 fuel standards applied only to truck models for the years 2014 through 2018, calling for a 20 percent reduction in heavy-vehicle emissions by 2018. According to an article on LATimes.com, experts estimated manufacturers would need to boost fuel efficiency for trucks to an average of 8 mpg to meet the new standards. 

The administration’s belief is that tightening restrictions on carbon emissions from trucks will cut back on overall pollution, reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil and save consumers money. 

Related: Septic System Approval Process Not So Simple

Heavy-duty trucks are the second-largest source of transportation greenhouse gas emissions, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Extending the program beyond model year 2018 will essentially further reduce fuel consumption with more advanced technologies. 

The President requested that a first draft of the regulations for medium- and heavy-duty trucks be completed by March 2015, and ordered the EPA and U.S. Department of Transportation to finalize the rules a year later. 

In a White House press release, President Obama said new tax credits would be offered “both for companies that manufacture heavy-duty alternative-fuel vehicles and those that build fuel infrastructure so that trucks running on biodiesel or natural gas or hybrid electric technology, will have more places to fill up.” 

Related: Machine Matters: Knock, Knock.  Fuel System Calling.

Updated medium- and heavy-duty trucks with advanced — greener — technology could translate to higher sticker prices for consumers, but price has, and always will, factor into your truck-buying decisions. Or when you buy anything for that matter. Now you might just have to consider the costs of upgrading to cleaner vehicles, but remember, you will also be helping to decreases greenhouse gas emissions. 

Required increases in fuel efficiencies benefits everyone, especially those business owners who want to promote a “green” company. Perhaps your fuel-efficient fleet will attract potential customers looking for an environmentally friendly septic business. 

As a business owner who invests in dump trucks, equipment-hauling medium-duty flatbeds or vacuum trucks, do you favor or oppose a plan that reduces emissions, raises mpg standards and adds to the price of a truck? 

Related: Rules and Regs: Rules and Regs

Related Stories

Like this story? Sign up for alerts!