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New Fuel Efficiency Standards Will Give Americans Over 50 mpg

by on August 29, 2012

By Samantha Savory

In the latest environmental news, yesterday President Barack Obama finalized new regulation changes on the Corporate Average Fuel Economy Requirements, or CAFÉ, which will require new fuel efficiency standards on cars in the United States to get at least 54.4 miles to the gallon.  In an effort to cut traveling costs for working Americans and help reduce air pollution, car makers have up until 2025 to fully implement these standards, with most of the changes expected to take place after 2020.

From now until 2016, automobile makers are required to raise the average fuel efficiency to 35.5 mpg. Right now the average mile per gallon for American cars range from 25 to 35 mpg.

Gas prices have spiked 19 percent over the past three months, making the cost of simply driving to and from work astronomical and furthermore, making summer family road trip vacations nearly impossible for many middle class families. While current gas prices are hovering around $4.00 per gallon, this news comes at a great time for many commuters. This is not only positive news for the environment but it is also great for everyone’s budget! According to the While House, this new fuel efficiency standard will save Americans $1.7 trillion in gasoline costs and reduce U.S. oil consumption by 12 billion barrels.

With cars and trucks accounting for 20 percent of carbon emissions and more than 40 percent of U.S. oil consumption, this news comes at a great time that will help counter the increased pollution effects that the United States has produced, especially over the last 30 years. The standards will reduce carbon dioxide pollution by over 6 billion metric tons – equivalent to the emissions from the United States last year, or what the Amazon rainforest absorbs in three years. These new regulations will also act as another level of protection for the public’s health by significantly reducing air toxins, smog and soot.

CAFE requirements were first imposed in the 1970s in response to foreign oil embargoes, and the Obama administration says this is the first update in decades. For great ways to save on gas traveling costs in the meantime, click here.

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