Agencies finalize GHG and fuel efficiency standards for heavy-duty trucks

Standards will also impact certain trailers

Posted August 19, 2016

EPA and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) jointly finalized standards for medium- and heavy-duty vehicles that are intended to help improve fuel efficiency and cut carbon emissions.

EPA says the final phase two program promotes a new generation of cleaner, more fuel-efficient trucks by encouraging the wider application of currently available technologies and the development of new and advanced cost-effective technologies through model year 2027.

The vehicle and engine performance standards would cover model years 2021-2027, and apply to semi-trucks, large pickup trucks and vans, and all types and sizes of buses and work trucks.

The agencies are also finalizing fuel-efficiency and greenhouse gas (GHG) standards for trailers for the first time. EPA trailer standards, which exclude certain categories such as mobile homes, will begin to take effect in model year 2018 for certain trailers, while NHTSA’s standards will take effect as of 2021, with credits available for voluntary participation before then. Technologies for trailers — including aerodynamic devices, light weight construction and self-inflating tires — can reduce total fuel consumption by tractor-trailers

The final phase two standards were called for by President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, and respond to the President’s directive in early 2014 to develop new standards that run into the next decade. This final rulemaking builds on the fuel efficiency and GHG emissions standards already in place for model years 2014-2018. It also builds on standards that the Administration has put in place for light-duty vehicles.

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