Tag Archives: driving a stake through the auto industry

Car industry failing? Make cars more expensive and useless! Yeah, that’s the ticket!

Obama and his demmerkrats are about to turn the car industry over to the tender mercies of the EPA, which wants to mandate high ethanol fuel blends (which cars can’t run on), initiate a carbon tax (which consumers will pay) and force mileage to increase by 40% (raising the price of cars still higher). I used to think that the people advocating these things were merely deluded fools – the more it continues, the more I’m convinced that the have the goal of destroying our economy, nothing less.

The EPA is trying to craft new federal emissions standards that would match California’s still-to-be-implemented state-level greenhouse-gas standards for vehicles and federal automobile fuel economy regulations now being developed by the Transportation Department. Figuring out how to do this won’t be easy, or cheap.

The Obama administration inherited a congressional mandate for auto makers to boost the average fuel economy of their vehicle fleets to at least 35 miles per gallon by 2020, a 40% increase from the roughly 25 mpg standard for the current fleet. California estimates its standards would require auto makers to achieve 35 mpg by 2017. And unlike the federal government, which gives auto makers compliance credits for churning out “flex-fuel” vehicles capable of running on high levels of ethanol, California requires auto makers to prove motorists are actually filling up on those high-level blends in order to claim credit.

Just meeting the federal standards will require huge investments by auto makers. Last summer, the Transportation Department estimated its proposal to require auto makers to achieve 31.6 mpg by 2015 would cost them $46.7 billion, a sum the agency said would make it among the most expensive rule makings in U.S. history.

Under one portion of the Clean Air Act, facilities that could be major sources of air pollution can be built or significantly modified only if they are equipped with “the best available control technology.” The law generally applies to power plants, refineries, steel mills or other facilities if they emit at least 100 tons per year of any regulated air pollutant.

But the law also covers “any building, structure, facility or installation” that emits at least 250 tons per year of any regulated air pollutant — a threshold low enough to cover roughly one million midsize to large commercial-sector sources, including restaurants, hospitals, schools and office buildings, based on estimates by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

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