From: ENN Staff
Published March 4, 2014 09:20 AM

EPA Sets Cleaner Fuel and Car Standards

Yesterday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized emission standards for cars and gasoline that will significantly reduce harmful pollution and in turn prevent thousands of premature deaths and illnesses related to respiratory ailments.

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Based on extensive input from the public and a broad range of stakeholders, including public health groups, auto manufacturers, refiners, and states, the standards will also enable efficiency improvements in the cars and trucks we drive.

"These standards are a win for public health, a win for our environment, and a win for our pocketbooks," said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. "By working with the auto industry, health groups, and other stakeholders, we're continuing to build on the Obama Administration's broader clean fuels and vehicles efforts that cut carbon pollution, clean the air we breathe, and save families money at the pump."

The final standards will quickly and effectively cut harmful soot, smog and toxic emissions from cars and trucks. The Obama Administration’s actions to improve fuel economy and reduce greenhouse gases from these same vehicles will also result in average fuel savings of more than $8,000 by 2025 over a vehicle’s lifetime. The fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards covering model year vehicles from 2012-2025 are projected to save American families more than $1.7 trillion in fuel costs.

The standards will slash emissions establishing a 70 percent tighter particulate matter standard and virtually eliminating fuel vapor emissions. These standards will also reduce vehicle emissions of toxic air pollutants, such as benzene by up to 30 percent.

The final fuel standards will reduce gasoline sulfur levels by more than 60 percent — down from 30 to 10 parts per million (ppm) in 2017. Reducing sulfur in gasoline enables vehicle emission control technologies to perform more efficiently. New low-sulfur gas will provide significant and immediate health benefits because every gas-powered vehicle on the road built prior to these standards will run cleaner — cutting smog-forming NOx emissions by 260,000 tons in 2018.

Read more at the USEPA Newsroom.

Car exhaust image via Shutterstock.

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