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EPA/OAR RIN: 2060-AU09 Publication ID: Fall 2018 
Title: The Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model Years 2021-2026 Passenger Cars and Light Trucks 
Abstract:

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model Years 2021-2026 Passenger Cars and Light Trucks” (SAFE Vehicles Rule). The SAFE Vehicles Rule, if finalized, would amend certain existing Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) and tailpipe carbon dioxide emissions standards for passenger cars and light trucks and establish new standards, all covering model years 2021 through 2026. More specifically, EPA proposed to amend its carbon dioxide emissions standards for model years 2021 through 2025 because they are no longer appropriate and reasonable in addition to establishing new standards for model year 2026. The preferred alternative is to retain the model year 2020 standards (specifically, the footprint target curves for passenger cars and light trucks) for both programs through model year 2026, but comment is sought on a range of alternatives.

 
Agency: Environmental Protection Agency(EPA)  Priority: Economically Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: Undetermined  Unfunded Mandates: Undetermined 
EO 13771 Designation: Deregulatory 
CFR Citation: 40 CFR 80   
Legal Authority: 42 U.S.C. 7411, Clean Air Act   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need:

Since finalizing the agencies’ previous joint rulemaking in 2012 titled Final Rule for Model Year 2017 and Later Light-Duty Vehicle Greenhouse Gas Emission and Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards, and even since EPA’s 2016 and early 2017 mid-term evaluation process, the agencies have gathered new information, and have performed new analysis. That new information and analysis has led the agencies to the tentative conclusion that holding standards constant at MY 2020 levels through MY 2026 is appropriate.

Summary of the Legal Basis:

42 U.S.C. 7411, Clean Air Act

Alternatives:

The preferred alternative is to retain the model year 2020 standards (specifically, the footprint target curves for passenger cars and light trucks) through model year 2026, but comment is sought on a wide range of alternatives, including eight alternatives ranging in stringency from the preferred alternative to the standards currently in place. Those eight alternatives are: 1) The no action alternative, which leaves the standards as they are and were announced in 2012 for MYs 2021-2025; 2) Alternative 2 increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2021-2026 by 0.5% for passenger cars and 0.5% for light trucks; 3) Alternative 3 phases out A/C efficiency and off-cycle adjustments and increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2021-2026 by 0.5% for passenger cars and 0.5% for light trucks; 4) Alternative 4 increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2021-2026 by 1.0% for passenger cars and 2.0% for light trucks; 5) Alternative 5 increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2022-2026 by 1.0% for passenger cars and 2.0% for light trucks; 6) Alternative 6 increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2021-2026 by 2.0% for passenger cars and 3.0% for light trucks; 7) Alternative 7 phases out A/C efficiency and off-cycle adjustments and increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2021-2026 by 1.0% for passenger cars and 2.0% for light trucks; and 8) Alternative 8 increases the stringency of targets annually during MYs 2022-2026 by 2.0% for passenger cars and 3.0% for light trucks.In addition, EPA is requesting comment on a variety of enhanced flexibilities whereby EPA would make adjustments to current incentives and credits provisions and potentially add new flexibility opportunities to broaden the pathways manufacturers would have to meet standards. Such an approach would support the increased application of technologies that the automotive industry is developing and deploying that could potentially lead to further long-term emissions reductions and allow manufacturers to comply with standards while reducing costs.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits:

Compared to maintaining the post-2020 standards set forth in 2012, NHTSA’s analysis estimates that this proposal would result in $176 billion in societal net benefits, and reduce highway fatalities by 12,700 lives (over the lifetimes of vehicles through MY 2029). U.S. fuel consumption would increase by about half a million barrels per day (2-3 percent of total daily consumption, according to the Energy Information Administration), emissions would increase by 7,400 million metric tons of carbon dioxide by 2100, and would impact the global climate by 3/1000th  of one degree Celsius by 2100, also when compared to the standards set forth in 2012.

Risks:

The proposed rule analyzes a range of public health and environmental risks, including the risks of increased greenhouse gas emission reductions on climate change, risks of increases of criteria pollutants and air toxics emissions on public health and air quality, and the risks of increased mobile source air emissions and climate impacts on children’s health. The proposal discusses risks associated with increased petroleum consumption and the need for the U.S. to conserve oil, as well as risks associated with vehicle safety and travel demand. The proposal also examines economic risks including impacts on employment, vehicle sales, and U.S. industry competitiveness.

Timetable:
Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  08/24/2018  83 FR 42986   
NPRM Comment Period End  10/23/2018 
Final Rule  03/00/2019 
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Undetermined  Government Levels Affected: Undetermined 
Federalism: Undetermined 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Agency Contact:
Christopher Lieske
Environmental Protection Agency
Office of Air and Radiation
ASD,
Ann Arbor, MI 48105
Phone:734 214-4584
Email: lieske.christopher@epa.gov