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EPA to ease back emissions standards

Environmental regulators announced on Monday they will ease emissions standards for cars and trucks, saying that a timeline put in place by President Barack Obama was not appropriate and set standards “too high.”

The Environmental Protection Agency said it completed a review that will affect vehicles for model years 2022-2025 but it did not specify details on new standards, which it said would be forthcoming. Current regulations from the EPA require the fleet of new vehicles to get 36 miles per gallon in real-world driving by 2025. That’s about 10 mpg over the existing standard.

The agency said in its decision that the regulation set under the Obama administration “presents challenges for auto manufacturers due to feasibility and practicability, raises potential concerns related to automobile safety, and results in significant additional costs on consumers, especially low-income consumers.”

The EPA, in partnership with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, will work to come up with new standards.

“This was the right decision, and we support the Administration for pursuing a data-driven effort and a single national program as it works to finalize future standards,” said Gloria Bergquist, vice president, communications and public affairs for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, in a statement. “We appreciate that the Administration is working to find a way to both increase fuel economy standards and keep new vehicles affordable to more Americans.”

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