Washington, D.C. – A new cooperative effort in the U.S. has resulted in a single timeframe for proposing fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for 2017-2025 cars and light-duty trucks. The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the state of California will all propose new standards by September 1, 2011.

The timeframe agreement signals continued collaboration that could lead to an extension of the current National Clean Car Program, providing automakers certainty as they work toward the next generation of clean, fuel-efficient cars. In the past, lack of cooperation between the parties resulted in California and other states setting their own standards.

“Today’s announcement is a big step forward, but it is only the beginning,” said DOT secretary Ray LaHood. “By working together with EPA and the California Air Resources Board to develop standards for the next generation of clean cars, we can set a standard that works for automakers across the country. Our continued collaboration is a win-win-win for the environment, businesses and the American consumer.”

In April 2010, the DOT and EPA established greenhouse gas (GHG) emission and fuel economy standards for model year 2012-2016 light-duty cars and trucks. In the fall of 2010, California accepted compliance with these federal GHG standards as meeting similar state standards as adopted in 2004, resulting in the first coordinated national program. The standards require these vehicles to meet an estimated combined average emissions level of 250 grams of carbon dioxide per mile in model year 2016, which is equivalent to 35.5 miles per gallon (6.7 L/100 km).

Prior to the cooperation announcement, California announced its intention to propose GHG emissions standards in March 2011, while the EPA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) were working on an end-of-September timeline for proposal. The announcement ensures that both proposals will come out simultaneously after a thorough joint review of all data available.

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