Environmental groups urge automobile makers to support California’s clean-air standards

Environmental groups urge automobile makers to support California’s clean-air standards

Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) and some other nonprofit environmental advocacy groups have urged automobile manufacturers to end their ties to a Trump administration lawsuit that seeks to strip California of its Clean Air Act (CAA) waiver, which allows the Golden State to set its own, stricter emissions standards.

California approved and implemented its own CAA to help curb increasing emissions of greenhouse gases, and the state’s stricter rules remained in force even after the federal government introduced its less-stricter carbon emission standards nationwide. The Trump administration opposed the state’s stricter emissions standards and a number of auto manufacturers joined forces with the Trump administration in challenging the state’s authority to impose its own rules on EV makers.

However, General Motors (GM) changed its allegiance by withdrawing from the Trump administration lawsuit soon after Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden was declared winner in the general elections last month.

Now, environmental groups are urging other automakers to follow suit and put an end to their support to the Trump administration’s controversial lawsuit against the Golden State. The list of remaining automakers supporting the lawsuit includes Fiat Chrysler, Hyundai, Toyota, Mazda, Subaru, Mitsubishi, and Nissan.

Leaders of the environmental-groups, including the Sierra Club, EDF, National Resources Defense Council, and Union of Concerned Scientists, said in a statement that the automakers should support California’s emissions standards to support the next generation of clean car standards to help eliminate various climate issues.

The newly released statement reads, “We also ask that you publicly commit to provide leadership in supporting the next generation of clean car standards to help eliminate the array of climate, nitrogen oxides, and particulate pollution from new motor vehicles by 2035 while creating new high quality jobs.”

GM and other automakers have repeatedly been severely criticized by environment advocates for using double standards as, on the one hand, they ask the government to encourage EVs to protect the environment and, on the other, they opposed California's right to enact and implement clean-air standards.

President-elect Biden has already declared that his administration will give full support to the fight against global warming and the resultant climate change. While, like Mr. Biden, most of US residents hold the scientifically-backed view that carbon emissions are responsible for global warming and climate change. The Trump administration has always been skeptic of the notion.

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