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Environmental Leader cars on freeway

Automakers Surpassing GHG Standards

Environmental Leader cars on freewayFor the second consecutive year, the automotive industry outperformed the national greenhouse gas emissions standards. Overall industry compliance in model year 2013 was 12 grams of GHG/mile below what the 2013 standard requires.

The EPA yesterday released the second annual Manufacturers’ Performance Report, which details how individual firms are complying with GHG emissions standards for cars and light trucks.

The agency’s GHG emissions standards cover light-duty vehicles from model year 2012 to 2025. The standards are projected to cut 6 billion metric tons of GHGs over the lifetimes of vehicles sold in these years.

The report found that the majority of manufacturers, representing more than 99 percent of sales, met both the 2012 and 2013 standards. The remaining manufacturers have several more years to come into compliance.

Automakers are using the optional flexibilities built into the standards such as improved air conditioning systems and the use of fleet averaging. The EPA says these flexibilities continue to increase consumer choice, spur technology innovation and decrease compliance costs while providing manufacturers with options on how and when to make reductions.

According to the EPA’s most recent CO2 Emissions and Fuel Economy Trends Report, model year 2013 vehicles achieved a record average of 24.1 miles per gallon — a 0.5 mpg increase over the previous year and an increase of nearly 5 mpg since 2004. Average CO2 emissions from cars and light trucks are also at a record low.

In 2012, automakers’ overall GHG performance was 9.8 grams of GHG/mile below what the standard required.

Photo Credit: cars on freeway via Shutterstock. 

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