Car Manufacturers Exceed Greenhouse Gas And Carbon Dioxide Emission Standards As Well As Fuel Economy

Nov 03, 2016 09:09 AM EDT | Staff Reporter

US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) established a Program, together with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), containing standards for vehicles that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve fuel economy. According to two reports released by EPA, fuel economy is at a record high and carbon dioxide emissions are at a record low.

The Greenhouse Gas Manufacturer Performance Report shows that nine of the twelve manufacturers managed to meet or beat the standards in model year (MY) 2015, averaging at 7 grams per mile of GHG emissions better than required by the GHG emissions standard of MY 2015. This is the fourth consecutive year that the auto industry outperformed the standards by a sizeable margin.

According to the 2016 Carbon Dioxide Emission and Fuel Economy Trends Report, carbon dioxide emissions averaged 358 grams per mile while fuel economy averaged 24.8 miles per gallon an increase of 5.5 or 28% since MY 2004.

Subaru and Nissan led the way for outperforming the emission standards with a margin of compliance of 23 grams per mile (g/mi). Three manufacturers (Fiat Chrysler, Mercedes, and Kia) lagged behind their unique 2015 standards. Fiat Chrysler missed out by 3 g/mi, Mercedes by 11 g/mi, and Kia by 12 g/mi.

Christopher Grundler, EPA Director of the Office of Transportation and Air Quality, said. "Car buyers can go to the showroom knowing that no matter what kind of vehicle they buy, it will be better for the climate - and their wallets - than ever before."

The auto industry is adopting environment-friendly and fuel-efficient technologies like turbochargers, lightweight engineering, engine downsizing and improved aerodynamics. In fact, more the hundred MY 2016 car models on the market today already meet the 2025 standards. 

In 2011, President Obama made an agreement with the United Auto Workers, the State of California and thirteen automakers; the goal of which was to increase fuel economy to 54.5 miles per gallon. The thirteen automakers who participated in the deal are  BMW, Chrysler, Ford, GM, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar/Land Rover, Kia, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota, and Volvo. The new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) will regulate model years between 2017 and 2025. 

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