GM, Toyota and several other automakers plan to intervene on the administration’s behalf in a
The move was announced Monday by
California and more than 20 other states have
“With our industry facing the possibility of multiple overlapping and inconsistent standards that drive up costs and penalize consumers, we had an obligation to intervene,” said Bozzella, who is also chief executive officer of the Association of Global Automakers, an industry trade group. “The decision to intervene in the lawsuit is about how the standard should be applied, not what the standard should be.”
The Trump administration last year proposed to dramatically ease federal automobile greenhouse gas emission and fuel economy standards that had previously been coordinated with California. California officials rebuffed and vowed to continue to enforcing their more stringent standards, which are in place through 2025.
To support the proposed rollback, the Trump administration has pointed to government data showing more automakers are taking advantage of a built-in mechanism in the rules by tapping
The move by GM and the other companies breaks with Ford Motor Co.,
“California will continue to carry out our mandate to meet national air quality standards and keep working with those automakers committed to a framework that delivers cleaner vehicles that benefit consumers and the environment,” Nichols added.
Dave Cooke, a senior clean-vehicles analyst with the Union of Concerned Scientists, said the legal intervention by the companies shows their full support for the Trump administration’s goal of curtailing California’s authority over vehicles.
“It’s not just a process question -- they’re going to the mat over state authority, on the side of the administration,” he said in an email.
“Instead of choosing the responsible path forged by four automakers and the state of California, one that will move us toward the cleaner, alternative fuel vehicles of the future, these companies have chosen to head down a dead-end road,” Carper said.
Most automakers have urged officials in Washington and Sacramento for more than a year to compromise, but no deal materialized after limited talks broke down earlier this year.
Still, Bozzella said he held out hope for a middle ground. “We can still reach an agreement that is supported by all the parties,” he said.
Ann Carlson, a law professor at the University of California at Los Angeles, was skeptical about that possibility.
“‘By throwing their heft behind the Trump position that California lacks the authority to issue its own standards, GM and company are making it even less likely that California and the federal government will reach some sort of compromise,” she wrote in a blog post Monday.
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