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New regulations would double fuel efficiency, says Obama administration

The Obama administration is set to announce new regulations which would double fuel efficiency in the next 13 years.

Fuel efficiency standards obama administration august 2012Enlarge
US President Barack Obama speaks on fuel efficiency standards for model years 2017-2025 cars and light trucks July 29, 2011 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC. Obama announced a historic agreement with thirteen major automakers to pursue the next phase in the Administration’s national vehicle program, increasing fuel economy to 54.5 miles per gallon for cars and light-duty trucks by Model Year 2025. (MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

The Obama administration finalized new regulations on Tuesday, which would double the fuel efficiency of cars and trucks by 2025, according to the Associated Press.

The new standard would require cars and trucks to average 54.5 miles per gallon within 13 years, a marked increase from 28.6 mpg last year, said the AP.

"These fuel standards represent the single most important step we’ve ever taken to reduce our dependence on foreign oil," said President Barack Obama in a statement, according to the Detroit Free Press. "It’ll strengthen our nation's energy security, it's good for middle class families and it will help create an economy built to last."

According to the administration, the regulations will save families more than $1.7 trillion in fuel expenditure and save $8,000 over a lifetime for vehicles bought in 2025, said the AP.

The US Environmental Protection Agency estimated that the new regulations could reduce oil consumption by 2 million barrels a day, according to NBC News.

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"This is truly a watershed moment. Twenty years from now we’ll be looking back on this as the day we chose innovation over stagnation," said Michelle Robinson, director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' Clean Vehicles program, according to NBC News. "These standards will protect consumers from high gas prices, curb global warming pollution, cut our oil use, and create new jobs in the American auto industry and around the nation."

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The announcement, made by Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and EPA Administrator Lisa P. Jackson marks a compromise the White House forged between the auto industry, environmentalists and labor unions, noted The Washington Post.

"The final rule issued by EPA and NHTSA appears consistent with the proposal they issued last year," said General Motors in a statement, according to the Detroit Free Press. "While the requirements are aggressive, we intend to pursue them vigorously."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120828/new-regulations-would-double-fuel-efficiency-say