Gov. John Carney on April 4 urged the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to reconsider the agency’s planned revision of Light Duty Vehicle Standards for auto emissions because of adverse environmental, economic and health impacts for Delaware.
EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced April 2 his intention to roll back Light Duty Vehicle Standards, which in conjunction with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration fuel economy standards, require automakers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve the fuel economy of cars and pickup trucks. As currently drafted, these regulations create fuel savings for drivers, promote a healthier environment, reduce dependence on imported oil, and also have led to a greater selection of clean-energy vehicle technologies for Delawareans to choose from.
“In Delaware, almost 30 percent of greenhouse gas emissions come from the transportation sector, and the reduction of emissions in this sector has become an important strategy for the state to mitigate the effects of climate change and to improve air quality,” said Carney. “I am urging the Trump administration to reconsider their plan to roll back the Light Duty Vehicle regulations. Taking this action will be detrimental to the public’s health and quality of life, especially vulnerable populations such as children and the elderly.”
California has a Clean Air Act waiver from EPA that allows it to set more stringent emissions standards. Delaware, along with 12 other states and the District of Columbia, has adopted the California standards for helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality, and mitigate the effects of climate change. The California waiver is being reexamined by EPA for possible elimination. Carney said Delaware supports the continuation of the California waiver under the Clean Air Act.
DNREC’s Division of Energy & Climate and Coastal Programs manages the state’s Clean Transportation Incentive Program, which provides rebates for electric and other clean vehicles. Since the start of this program in 2015, more than 660 Delawareans and Delaware businesses have received rebates for electric vehicles, which reduce carbon dioxide emissions in the state by approximately 2,000 tons annually.