PRINCETON, NJ - On August 9, President Barack Obama announced a national program of standards for work trucks, buses, and other heavy-duty vehicles with the goal of raising fuel efficiency and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This follows the announcement made a few weeks earlier to more than double the current Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFÉ) Standard to 54.5 mpg by 2020. NAFA Fleet Management Association, comprised of fleet professionals throughout the United States and Canada, has followed these rulings closely.
“Fleet managers need to be aware of these new standards and plan for their implementation in the next few years since they may change their operations to some degree,” said NAFA’s Executive Director, Phillip E. Russo, CAE.
According to NAFA’s Legislative Counsel in Washington, D.C., the final ruling closely follows the initially proposed rule and places the mandates on the manufacturer and not the purchaser. NAFA supports the new standards.
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) developed the standards in close coordination with the companies that met with the President as well as other stakeholders, following requests from companies to develop the program. The oil savings standards proposed will save American businesses an estimated $50 billion in fuel costs over the life of the program.
Under the new national program, trucks and buses built in 2014 through 2018 are slated to reduce oil consumption by a projected 530 million barrels and greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution by approximately 270 million metric tons. As with the Administration’s car standards, this program, developed primarily with off-the-shelf technologies, was constructed in coordination with truck and engine manufacturers, fleet owners, the State of California, environmental groups, and other stakeholders.
The vehicles that are involved with this program include combination tractors (semi-trucks), heavy-duty pickup trucks, and vocational vehicles such as delivery trucks, buses, and garbage trucks.