Local community leaders fighting to keep clean car standards


In this Aug. 1, 2018, photo, cars on the Grand Central Parkway pass LaGuardia Airport in New York. The Trump administration has proposed rolling back tougher Obama-era gas mileage requirements that are set to take effect after 2020. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — Labor union representatives and environmental leaders are speaking out about the Trump administration's plan to roll back clean car standards by 2020.

The plan would eliminate the federal requirement that new cars and light trucks get more fuel-efficient on average each year.

In 2012, the United States government finalized greenhouse gas reduction and fuel-efficient standards for new cars and passenger vehicles in model years 2017-2025.

According to the Environmental Defense Fund, the clean car standards cuts harmful climate pollution. It also helps Americans save money and creates jobs.

"At the pump, we are paying more and more for gasoline, the clean car standards provide the mechanism to move towards the higher miles per gallon vehicle in our country," Mark Bentley with Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition.

The Union of Concerned Scientists says Alabama has saved $600 million because of the clean car standards.

"To our elected and appointed officials at the federal level, the current fuel efficiency standards are the best thing to do for the people of Alabama," Daniel Tait with Energy Alabama explained.

President Donald Trump has said he wants to change the country's clean car standards. It's something Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition doesn't agree with.

"What happens is you won't get the benefit of the higher miles per gallon. You will be paying more at the pump. You will be visiting the pump more often for fuel," Bently said.

The Union of Concerned Scientist says the current standards also help produce jobs. These Alabama community leaders have been traveling around the state to promote clean car standards and hope politicians pay close attention to why these standards are important.

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