New US standards for cleaner fuels to slash air pollution

The US Government claims its new standards for cleaner fuels and cars will enable the nation to have the “greatest pollution reductions” at the lowest cost. The Environmental Protection Agency […]

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By Priyanka Shrestha

The US Government claims its new standards for cleaner fuels and cars will enable the nation to have the “greatest pollution reductions” at the lowest cost.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed “sensible” standards for cars and fuel to significantly cut harmful pollution, prevents thousands of premature deaths and illnesses whilst also enabling efficiency improvements in vehicles. The plans are part of the President’s national programme for clean cars and trucks, which includes fuel efficiency standards.

The new measures are expected to slash emissions of harmful and smog-forming pollutants by 80%, reduce fuel vapour emissions to “near zero” and cut vehicle emissions by up to 40%. They also aim to reduce gasoline sulphur levels by more than 60%, which helps vehicle emission control technologies to perform more efficiently.

EPA Acting Administrator Bob Perciasepe said: “The Obama Administration has taken a series of steps to reinvigorate the auto industry and ensure that the cars of tomorrow are cleaner, more efficient and saving drivers money at the pump and these common-sense cleaner fuels and cars standards are another example of how we can protect the environment and public health in an affordable and practical way.”

US state Governors welcomed the new proposals. Martin O’Malley, Governor of Maryland said: “The new motor fuel standards proposed today by the Environmental Protection Agency under President Obama’s leadership will help Maryland reach its goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2020. Reductions from mobile sources are one of the most important strategies needed to provide clean air to Maryland’s citizens for generations to come.”

Deval Patrick, Governor of Massachusetts added: ”I applaud President Obama and the EPA for issuing this new rule, which is a significant step forward in reducing air pollution from vehicles. This rule means cleaner cars and cleaner fuels, which in turn means healthier communities across the country. This common sense regulation is a victory for a cost-effective and sensible way to clean our air.”