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Saturday, January 09, 2016

Is Obama's Hope For Better Fuel Economy Sputtering Out?

There were high-fives this week from Detroit to Washington, D.C. as car makers celebrated record auto sales.

Americans bought 17.5 million cars and trucks in 2015. That's a huge turnaround from 2009, and the Obama administration cheered the rebound as vindication of the president's decision to rescue General Motors and Chrysler from bankruptcy.

"Because of the policy decisions that were made by this administration to place a bet on those workers, America has won, and our economy has been better for it," White House spokesman Josh Earnest told reporters Wednesday.

There's another element of the president's auto agenda, though, that's not looking so good: the drive for better fuel economy. In 2011, Obama struck a deal with automakers to sharply increase their vehicles' efficiency. The move was designed to save money for consumers. It was also a key ingredient in the president's recipe for reducing heat-trapping carbon pollution linked to climate change.



Anonymous said...

This whole fuel economy thing is controlled by the government and the auto makers. 35 years ago, I had a Datsun (Nissan) that averaged 35 miles per gallon. Can you honestly tell me that 35 years later automotive technology hasn't evolved to better that?

Cars that last longer = loss of revenue for auto makers so planned obselescence is engineered into every automobile. Cars getting 50,60,70 mpg = loss of revenue for big oil.

Electric cars that are re-charged by electricity still (for the most part at least for now) generated by fossil fuels = false economy.

Anonymous said...

The whole fuel economy thing and emissions laws are designed to make owning and operating an automobile impossible for most people. It has backfired thou.

Anonymous said...

High fuel economy and reduced emissions are mutually exclusive goals. You can have one or the other, or part of each, but not all of each at the same time.

Anonymous said...

11:11 is absolutely correct. There could be more efficient cars but...

Furthermore, with prices going down, it should provoke citizens to wonder why they were ever high in the first place. One thing is assured, taxation has been a huge kibosh on keeping pricing low! Also, the government's continual fight over oil pipelines and insane 'natural habitats' is not doing citizens any good. Let's face it, if you can't afford gas, can you really go joy-riding through the plethora of natural parks? Or do they stand dormant oil dens untapped due to tree-hugging enthusiasts with more time and money than they know what to do with--