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Defying Trump, California locks in vehicle emission deals with major automakers

Stock MarketsAug 17, 2020 05:50PM ET
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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: FILE PHOTO: Traffic moves slowly on the 405 freeway in Los Angeles

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The California Air Resources Board (CARB) and major automakers on Monday confirmed they had finalized binding agreements to cut vehicle emissions in the state, defying the Trump administration's push for weaker curbs on tailpipe pollution.

The agreements with carmakers, including Ford Motor (NYSE:F) Co, Volkswagen AG (DE:VOWG_p), Honda Motor Co and BMW AG, were first announced in July 2019 as voluntary measures, prompting anger from U.S. President Donald Trump.

A month later, the Justice Department opened an antitrust probe of the agreements, only to end it without action.

The administration in March finalized a rollback of U.S. vehicle emissions standards to require 1.5% annual increases in efficiency through 2026, well below the 5% annual increases in discarded rules under President Barack Obama.

The Center for Biological Diversity estimates the deal will improve fuel economy 3.7% year over year between 2022-2026.

Volvo Cars, owned by China's Geely Holdings, also finalized its agreement on Monday.

CARB said the deal will cut vehicle greenhouse gas emissions through 2026 and "encourage innovation to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles, provide industry the certainty needed to make investments and create jobs, and save consumers money."

The White House did not comment.

The 13 states that follow California's standards, which represent about 40% of the U.S. auto market, have said they support the agreements.

In May, a group of 23 U.S. states led by California and some major cities challenged the Trump vehicle emissions rule.

Other major automakers like General Motors Co (NYSE:GM), Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV and Toyota Motor (NYSE:TM) Corp did not join the California agreement.

Those companies also sided with the administration in a separate lawsuit over whether the federal government can strip California of the right to set zero emission vehicle requirements.

Ford said the deal will support "and incentivize the production of electrified products, and create regulatory certainty." Honda said the agreement will allow it to sell "a single nationwide fleet... that achieves substantial annual emissions improvements."

Defying Trump, California locks in vehicle emission deals with major automakers
 

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Comments (7)
Allan Petersen
Allan Petersen Aug 19, 2020 12:26AM ET
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Way to go
Frank Altobello
Frank Altobello Aug 18, 2020 10:22AM ET
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More regulations is not what's needed, more ways to clean up our atmosphere is. Putting more restrictions in place is only slowing the amount pollution not helping diminish it. Cleaning the atmosphere, now that would be an accomplishment
Andrew carson
Andrew carson Aug 17, 2020 9:47PM ET
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CLM's 🥴
David Dunmyre
David Dunmyre Aug 17, 2020 6:15PM ET
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Since when does Crapifornia run this country?
Robert Sharp
Robert Sharp Aug 17, 2020 6:15PM ET
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It's the ty.r.any of the highest populated state
Hunt Richardson
Hunt Richardson Aug 17, 2020 6:14PM ET
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At least Ford will be best in class in fuel economy
eddie glass
eddie glass Aug 17, 2020 4:19PM ET
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not sure if anybody has been to california, but it has the highest amount of hunam feces on the streets of any state. there are massive amounts of garbage littering the streets of many cities. yes more regulations and banning plastic straws will fix the problem.
Ben Dover
Ben Dover Aug 17, 2020 4:19PM ET
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You need to start working and go to a better neighborhood.
eddie glass
eddie glass Aug 17, 2020 4:17PM ET
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countdown until california is complaining when about losing federal funding... and MSM headline "Trump cuts CA funding for no reason! ORA.NG Ma.N BA.D!"
 
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