Ten States File Lawsuit Against New Fuel Economy Standards for SUVs

On May 2, 2006, ten states led by California Attorney General Bill Lockyer filed a lawsuit against the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration for failing to address greenhouse gas emissions in its new fuel economy standards for S.U.V. and light trucks. The states, California, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont, were joined by the District of Columbia and New York City. The new rules, which will be in effect from 2008 through 2011, are considerably less stringent than California and nine other states’ limits on greenhouse gas emissions. The lawsuit also states that the new standards will have negative implication for air quality and the climate, because the weight-based standards will create incentives to build larger, less fuel-efficient vehicles.

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