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PNS Daily Newscast - October 19, 2018 


Senator Corker demands the Trump administration share intelligence on the killing of a Washington Post columnist. Also on the Friday rundown: groups sue over the Texas border wall plan; and the soggy summer in some states may lead to higher pumpkin prices for Halloween.

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Critics: Fuel-Standard Rollback Threatens National Security

The Trump administration says if fuel standards are relaxed, people won't drive as much, thereby saving money and reducing accidents. Critics say research debunks those claims. (Pixabay)
The Trump administration says if fuel standards are relaxed, people won't drive as much, thereby saving money and reducing accidents. Critics say research debunks those claims. (Pixabay)
August 3, 2018

RICHMOND, Va. – The Trump administration claims lowering mileage requirements and emission standards will make cars both cheaper and safer. But critics of the proposal announced on Thursday say it ignores another important concern.

Leo Cruz, associate director of communications and campaigns for National Security Action, says the change would continue a pattern of the administration ignoring top military brass - who believe climate change is a well-established threat to the nation.

In addition to the science, Cruz - a veteran who worked in the Defense Department - says the proposal also ignores the will of the voters.

"They voted for having America be 'great' - which means basic necessities of clean air, clean water," he says. "And rolling back regulations like these don't take us in that direction."

The Trump administration wants to freeze the fuel-efficiency and emissions standards in 2020, canceling out the increasingly tougher rules that were set to go into effect for cars and light trucks produced through 2026. There's a 60-day public comment period on the proposal.

The Obama administration had planned to keep tightening fuel requirements, saying these types of regulations on vehicles would save an estimated 40,000 lives annually through cleaner air.

Margo Oge, a former director of the EPA's Office of Transportation and Air Quality who worked on the original standards, questions the reasoning behind the new proposal.

"We're turning a pretty rare 'win-win' program that took us years under President Obama - thousands of hours - and now we're turning it into 'lose-lose' for everybody but the oil industry," she says.

Back in May, Virginia joined California and 15 other states anticipating the lower standards, in filing a lawsuit to stop them from being weakened.

Automakers view the new proposal as a starting point for negotiations with California, as they pitch for a single fuel-efficiency standard for the entire nation.

Trimmel Gomes, Public News Service - VA