Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti and hundreds of other Climate Mayors Thursday denounced the Trump administration’s efforts to lower vehicle efficiency standards and revoke a legal waiver granted to California and 13 other states to set stricter vehicle pollution standards than the federal level.
The Climate Mayors are a national coalition of 407 U.S. mayors dedicated to pursuing environmental initiatives.
“We cannot sacrifice the future of our planet on the altar of short-sighted and dangerous policies that serve narrow interests,” Garcetti said. “Extremely narrow interests: Automakers, consumers, and environmentalists agree that this rollback on progress helps no one and never should have seen the light of day. Their proposal directly threatens to stall the progress we have made in Los Angeles to take toxic fumes out of our air.”
The Obama-era fuel efficiency standards the Trump administration wants to roll back required automakers to build passenger vehicles with an average of about 54 miles per gallon by 2025, which would about double the current average.
Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao and Andrew Wheeler, the acting administrator of the EPA, said in a statement published Thursday on The Wall Street Journal’s website that the Obama standards would “impose significant costs on American consumers and eliminate jobs.” They also argued the standards “implemented by the previous administration raised the cost and decreased the supply of newer, safer vehicles,” and that removing the standards would save lives.
The Climate Mayors said the group plans to submit public comment on the Trump administration’s proposal.
“Boston is committed to addressing climate change head-on, and today we reaffirm our promise to become carbon neutral by 2050,” Boston Mayor Martin J. Walsh said. “Fighting climate change means fighting for all those affected by worsening air quality, extreme heat, eroding coastlines — issues that will continue to impact residents for generations to come.
Removing environmental protections like the CAFE standards is not the answer. As mayor, I will continue to work with cities across the country and around the world to uphold the tenets of the Paris Agreement and protect Boston against the very real impacts of climate change.”