Are CAFE standards rising or falling? If we know one thing about American policy and lawmaking, it’s that nothing stays static forever. Over the past centuries of our country’s history, we’ve enacted laws, rolled them back, and reenacted new ones in their places. This is the shape of progress: sometimes we must take a step back in order to take new steps forward.
The problem is that not everyone always agrees on which steps are forward and which steps are backward. Take, for example, the curious case of our nation’s shifting CAFE standards. Though the policy of maintaining fuel efficiency has been in place for decades, different administrations have seen fit either to tighten or loosen restrictions based on a number of factors.
For instance, under the Obama Administration, the United States set much higher standards for fuel efficiency than had been previously seen. While many hailed the changes as positive because of the impact they would have on the environment, others worried that the new restrictions could stifle the market: although cars would be more fuel-efficient and therefore save consumers on monthly fuel costs, the price of the new technology could cause collateral damage.
Auto dealers also expressed concern that higher prices for new cars might exclude some consumers from the market. “This increase shuts almost seven million people out of the new car market entirely,” said Bill Underriner, chairman of the National Auto Dealers Association (NYTimes).
Of course, these policies did not stay in place forever. With the advent of the Trump Administration came an EPA review of CAFE standards. Regardless of where fuel-efficiency standards wind up under the current leadership, we can rest assured that they will not stay that way forever. Meanwhile, the auto industry will continue moving forward, determined to bring consumers the best, most fuel-efficient cars at the most affordable prices.
Here at American Hydroformers, we assist those seeking compliance with current CAFE standards. To hear more about our services and how we can help, or to chat about anything else, please feel free to contact us at any time.
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