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March 9, 2022

Biden Administration Finalizes Rule Restoring State Authority to Protect Communities from Transportation Pollution

States drive us toward a zero emissions future

Contacts

Alexandria Trimble, Earthjustice, atrimble@earthjustice.org

Washington, D.C.

Today, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized its rule reinstating California’s Clean Air Act waiver allowing it to set greenhouse gas standards more protective than federal standards and to adopt zero-emissions standards for light-duty vehicles, reversing an illegal and unprecedented waiver revocation by the previous administration that threatened our climate and the well-being of communities around the country.

The Sierra Club and Earthjustice, together with a broad coalition of environmental and public health groups, took Trump’s EPA to court to preserve states’ rights to protect their communities from pollution and tackle the climate crisis that is already devastating states.

California's waiver also allows other states to adopt California's stronger, more protective standards. Reinstating the California waiver means that 17 states and the District of Columbia, representing more than 120 million people and over one-third of the automotive market, can once again exercise their right to protect communities from transportation pollution.

“Reinstating California’s Clean Air Act waiver to adopt standards stronger than federal standards for new cars and light-duty trucks is vital to California and has a positive ripple effect on states across the country, driving forward climate progress and delivering cleaner air for millions of Americans,” said Sierra Club President Ramón Cruz. “We are grateful to the Biden administration for restoring this strong policy that will slash transportation emissions, the nation’s largest source of climate-disrupting pollution and a significant source of air pollution.”

“States play an essential role in driving us toward a zero emissions transportation future,” said Earthjustice President Abigail Dillen. “By restoring California’s authority to set stronger clean car standards, the Biden administration is taking a critical step to protect public health and combat the climate crisis.”

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