Congressman DeSaulnier Leads Effort to Condemn Trump Administration’s Rollback of Fuel Economy Standards

August 2, 2018
Press Release

Washington, DC – Today, immediately following the Trump Administration’s announcement that it will seek to roll back current fuel economy and emissions standards and nullify California’s waiver, Congressman DeSaulnier (CA-11) led a coalition of 60 Democratic Members in announcing a resolution (H.Con.Res 130) to oppose the move. The resolution demonstrates multi-state support for the existing federal clean car standards and states’ right to adopt California’s more stringent standards. Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA) has authored a companion resolution in the Senate.

“Simply put, this is an attack on clean air and public health. And as other countries keep their focus on increasing fuel efficiency and reducing emissions, we run the risk of losing out on this progress and innovation,” said Congressman DeSaulnier. “By rolling back current fuel economy standards, the Trump Administration will cost the United States $450 billion by 2050 and increase health risks associated with air pollution. Our resolution puts the Administration on alert that this move will be met with strong and coordinated opposition across the country.”

“California has long served as a model for the nation in the fight against climate change and efforts to ensure we can all breathe clean air,” said Senator Harris. “The administration has again put a target on California’s back and they have chosen to protect pollution over people. Rolling back the fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions standards will jeopardize air quality improvements and efforts to reduce reliance on fossil fuels. This decision is not based on scientific evidence and will ultimately cost Americans money at the pump. I will fight for California’s waiver and support policies that move the industry forward, provide savings for consumers, reduce reliance on fossil fuels, and help combat climate change.”

This resolution is supported by numerous environmental organizations, including the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS), and the Sierra Club.

“The clean car standards are already saving our families billions at the pump, supporting nearly 300,000 American jobs, and cleaning up dangerous tailpipe pollution,” said Rhea Suh, president of the Natural Resources Defense Council. “Members of Congress should join with these leaders to try and stop the Trump administration from throwing this important progress into reverse.”

Current federal fuel efficiency standards established by the Obama Administration brought federal standards on par with those set by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), thereby creating the current One National Program. The CARB standards have since been adopted by 12 other states, accounting for 35 percent of the U.S. auto market, and are on track to reduce America’s oil dependence by more than 2 million barrels a day and will effectively eliminate the impact of 59 million vehicles from the road by 2030.

Since the Trump Administration announced its intent to roll back current fuel standards, Congressman DeSaulnier called for a national boycott of any company that does not commit to maintaining the Obama or CARB standards, urged California’s public retirement funds to divest from companies that participate in the rollback, led a group of Democratic Members from California in echoing his call for public divestment, and called on automobile manufactures to clarify how they will respond to such a rollback. In October of 2017, DeSaulnier sent a letter to then-Environmental Protection Agency Secretary Scott Pruitt urging the Administration to maintain and strengthen current standards.

DeSaulnier served on CARB for 10 years, was Chair of transportation committees in the California State Assembly and Senate, and is currently a member of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee.

H.Con.Res 130 is cosponsored by Representatives Nanette Barragán (CA-44), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Lisa Blunt Rochester (DE-At Large), Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01), Anthony Brown (MD-04), Michael Capuano (MA-07), Salud Carbajal (CA-24), Tony Cárdenas (CA-29), Matt Cartwright (PA-17), Judy Chu (CA-27), Katherine Clark (MA-05), Yvette Clarke (NY-09), Emanuel Cleaver (MO-05), Elijah E. Cummings (MD-07), Susan Davis (CA-53), Diana DeGette (CO-01), Keith Ellison (MN-05), Anna Eshoo (CA-18), John Garamendi (CA-03), Raul Grijalva (AZ-03), Colleen Hanabusa (HI-01), Brian Higgins (NY-26), Jared Huffman (CA-02), Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Henry C. “Hank” Johnson (GA-04), Ro Khanna (CA-17), Ruben Kihuen (NV-04) Barbara Lee (CA-13), Ted Lieu (CA-33), Daniel Lipinski (IL-03), Zoe Lofgren (CA-19), Alan Lowenthal (CA-47), Sean Patrick Maloney (NY-18), Doris Matsui (CA-06), Betty McCollum (MN-04), Donald McEachin (VA-04), Jerry McNerney (CA-09), Grace Meng (NY-06), Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC), Jimmy Panetta (CA-20), Ed Perlmutter (CO-07), Scott Peters (CA-52), Chellie Pingree (ME-01), Mark Pocan (WI-02), Jared Polis (CO-02), Mike Quigley (IL-05), Lucille Roybal-Allard (CA-40), Raul Ruiz (CA-36), Bobby Rush (IL-01), Tim Ryan (OH-13), Jan Schakowsky (IL-09) Adam Schiff (CA-28), Carol Shea-Porter (NH-01), Albio Sires (NJ-08), Thomas Suozzi (NY-03), Mike Thompson (CA-05), Paul Tonko (NY-20), Norma Torres (CA-35), and Peter Welch (VT-At Large).