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Trump Administration Will Abandon Negotiations with California on Vehicle Emissions Standards

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency wants to weaken federal limits on cars’ climate pollution and erase state limits entirely
The 405 freeway on a smoggy California day.

The 405 freeway on a smoggy California day. Heavy-duty trucks are the largest source of smog-forming NOx in California.

Andi Pantz / Getty Images
February 21, 2019
Washington, D.C. —

News reports indicate the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is ending talks with California about limits on climate pollution from cars. The Trump EPA proposed last year to roll back federal carbon pollution limits set during the Obama administration, and also to erase state limits that have been adopted by California and over a dozen other states. Earthjustice — along with numerous other organizations as well as states, cities, and companies — filed comments in October defending the authority of California and other states to limit carbon emissions, and urging EPA to keep and strengthen the federal standards. But the end of talks with California would signal that the Trump EPA intends to finalize the rollback soon.

As co-counsel for Sierra Club, Earthjustice is part of the legal team fighting to protect states' anti-pollution authority and to oppose rollback of the federal car standards.

The following is a statement from Earthjustice attorney Howard Fox on today's news:

"Not only is the Trump EPA refusing to protect us from climate pollution, it wants to prevent states from stepping in to limit the massive carbon pollution emitted by cars.

"With recent scientific reports warning of a worsening climate crisis, it is simply unhinged from reality for the Trump administration to stubbornly block limits on our nation's biggest source of climate pollution. These commonsense limits are readily achievable with existing technologies, and the EPA should be fighting to defend and strengthen them."

Background explainer: The Trump Administration’s Hazy Plans to Weaken Car Pollution Standards Won’t Work. Here’s Why


Daveon Coleman, Earthjustice, (608) 216-4648

We're the lawyers for the environment, and the law is on our side.