The Case for Raising the Fuel Efficiency of Cars

Last week President Obama announced an agreement between the White House, Environmentalists and the auto industry to increase the average fuel efficiency of passenger cars to 39 mpg. Unfortunately this cannot become the standard overnight or within the next year and the car manufacturers will have until 2016 to meet this standard. None the less it is a great achievement and proves that those of us who care about our environment now have a strong supporter in the White House.
There are always those who will find fault with a policy such as raising the fuel efficiency standards. One that particularly concerns us, suggests that consumers will prefer to buy gas guzzling cars as long as the price of fuel remains in the $2 to $3 range. Therefore although the car manufacturers will build fuel efficient hybrids and electric vehicles, the consumer will still want to buy large V8 SUVs.
We believe most people understand the need for increased fuel efficiency vehicles both for the environment and for economic, political and international stability and will buy more fuel efficient cars, when there is a large selection available. For those who do not buy into the reduce waste and save idea, the US government can always increase taxes on fuel (the US driver still pays less for gas than in most other developed nations) and pay off some of the US national debt.
Let’s take a step back here though. The reason we want and need fuel efficient and zero emission cars is not only based on the price of gas at the pump. We all know that right now the Hybrid and Electric cars sell at a premium to their all gas counterparts and there are concerns that the car prices will skyrocket with the fuel efficiency standards. But we are already seeing that new hybrids are causing competition and reducing prices and we imagine that with more hybrids and electric vehicles on offer and increased competition from different car manufacturers the price of a fuel efficient vehicle will not be too different from those of a less efficient vehicle today.
At we are all about reducing waste. So what is important to us is that all cars will have better fuel efficiency by 2016 and competition will take care of the prices. Remember though that there are already many cars available that get more than the proposed 2016 standard of 39 mpg. So if you plan to buy a new car before then look out for those with the best Environmental Performance ratings (discussed in a previous post, there is no need to wait.
Have a great week and reduce your waste.

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