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Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Good News: Federal Government Will Now 'Dictate the Actual Design of Trucks, Tractors and other Heavy-Duty Vehicles'

You heard that right. Not satisfied with shutting down 8% of the electric grid starting next year, the EPA will now dictate the design of tractor-trailers and other heavy duty vehicles that represent the lifeblood of American commerce.

Fortunately, someone is fighting back.

A lawsuit challenging the Obama Administration’s greenhouse gas emissions standards for heavy- and medium-duty trucks was filed Tuesday by the Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF) on behalf of small businesses and trade organizations whose members the foundation claims would be damaged by the regulations.

The suit charges that federal officials were legally required to submit the regulations for independent scientific scrutiny, but failed to do so.

...The regulations are the first-ever federal restrictions on greenhouse gas emissions from medium- and heavy-duty vehicles (such as trucks, tractor-trailers, and RVs). They were promulgated jointly by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA), and were published in the Federal Register on Sept. 15, 2011.

The rules’ negative impact on the economy could be significant, PFL claimed, pointing out that the EPA and NHTSA “themselves admit that from 2014 through 2017, the proposed emissions restrictions will substantially increase costs for everyone involved in transporting goods or people on the nation’s highways, including trucking companies, independent truckers, construction companies, and others.” ...

PFL said the rules are an attempt by government to “micromanage” truck design... “The rules mandate that heavy-duty vehicles increase fuel efficiency while decreasing CO2 emis­sions, thereby requiring the use of new types of fuels and engines, which in turn will require aerodynamic redesign,” PLF senior staff attorney Ted Hadzi-Antich said. “The regulatory requirements will necessarily involve EPA and NHTSA in the redesign of the vehicles because the aerodynamics have a major impact on the amount of work the vehicles can perform to transport freight at common highway speeds. Thus, the federal government now wants to dictate the actual design of trucks, tractors, and other heavy-duty vehicles used throughout the economy.”

For small businesses, it’s an “impossible” price tag, he added.

Pacific Legal Foundation describes itself as a donor-supported watchdog organiza­tion that “litigates for limited government, property rights, free enterprise, and a balanced approach to environmental regulations, in courts across the country.”

If you have a few spare bucks, you can support PLF here.


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