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2018 MEMA CAFE White Paper - New White Paper Shows that U.S. Jobs and Investments Are at Risk If Fuel Efficiency Standards Are Altered

Date: November 29, 2018
Topic: Economics & Employment

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Significantly changing fuel efficiency standards will cost jobs and put investments in the United States at risk, according to a white paper released by the Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association (MEMA).
“The argument for year-over-year increases in the stringency of the corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) and the greenhouse gas (GHG) vehicle emissions standards has moved past the potential impact on the environment to the impact on the economy,” the white paper reads. “There are two solid economic reasons why the United States should make sure that emissions standards have continued progress: investments by U.S. companies and continued job growth. Changing the standards now would strand investments and move them overseas, and also would leave America behind in the global race to fuel-efficient vehicles. It is not an overstatement to assert that U.S. companies’ ability to compete could be set back a decade.”
The paper, “Fuel Economy Standards: Jobs and Investments Are on the Line,” was released at the latest MEMA Policy Breakfast held Nov 27 at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. The policy panel included MEMA Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Ann Wilson, MEMA Senior Director of Environmental Policy Laurie Holmes, Umicore Autocat USA Director of Market Creation Greg Garr, and Aluminum Association Senior Director of Public Affairs Matt Meenan.
“[T]he Trump administration’s preferred choice of zero percent increases year-on-year through 2026 would result in a loss of 67,000 direct automotive industry jobs,” the paper says, citing IHS Markit analysis. “This would result in an overall industry loss of 500,000 direct, indirect and induced jobs by 2025 in comparison to the employment levels supported by the augural standards.”
“The existing fuel efficiency and emissions standards have driven motor vehicle parts suppliers to make significant investments in the U.S.,” the paper continues. “Making significant changes in the standards put these and future investments, by both large and mid-sized companies, at risk of being stranded.”
The policy breakfast and white paper are just the latest in an ongoing effort by MEMA to advocate for One National Program and steady advances in fuel efficiency standards. In detailed comments submitted to the Trump administration in October, MEMA again asserted that freezing progress in the fuel efficiency and vehicle emissions standards will impact American jobs and strand significant U.S. investments in technology development. MEMA also emphasizes suppliers’ need for a One National Program negotiated with California that provides long-term regulatory certainty. The comments, sent to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), were in response to the notice of proposed rulemaking of the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule for Model years 2021-2026 for Passenger Cars and Light Trucks.

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