March 02, 2020

The Trump administration’s withdrawal of California’s Clean Air Act preemption waiver in the SAFE Rule

Trish McCubbin

In September 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) promulgated a joint rule known as Part One of the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule. As explained in a recent Trends article, Part One of the SAFE Rule involves two interwoven actions by EPA and NHTSA to deny California and other states the ability to adopt greenhouse gas (GHG) tailpipe standards and electric vehicle programs that are more stringent than federal standards on emissions or fuel economy. The agencies then stated that they would issue new (and presumably more relaxed) fuel economy and emission standards in what we assume will be called the Part Two Rule.

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