Washington, D.C.—Responding to reports that several major automakers have struck a deal with the State of California for more stringent fuel economy rules than those currently proposed by the Trump administration, Admiral Dennis Blair (Ret.), the former Director of National Intelligence and Commander in Chief, U.S. Pacific Command and a member of Securing America’s Future Energy’s (SAFE’s) Energy Security Leadership Council, made the following statement:
“The deal with California will hopefully revitalize discussions with the Trump administration, so that we can continue to have regulatory certainty and one national system that continues to lower our dependence on oil as the only transportation fuel and provide fuel choice to consumers and businesses. We commend Ford, Volkswagen, Honda, and BMW of North America for thinking outside the box and making the effort.”
“California and the Trump administration should be united in fighting threats like Iran by reducing the importance of oil to our transportation system as opposed to fighting each other. They should now agree on a federal number, modernize the pool of credits by making them technology neutral, and expand the credits to safety technology that can save lives and fuel across the transportation sector,” Blair added.
Enacted in the wake of the 1973 OPEC oil embargo, fuel economy standards have formed a longstanding defense against oil price volatility and OPEC market manipulation. As the U.S. transportation system is 92 percent dependent on oil, efficiency regulations enhance our nation’s energy security by ensuring the U.S. transport network gets more mileage from every barrel of oil the United States uses.
The uniquely global nature of oil prices, where a supply disruption anywhere in the world affects prices everywhere, means oil price volatility engineered by OPEC or from other factors will affect American consumers, regardless of how much oil the U.S. produces. Recent attacks on shipping through the Strait of Hormuz, including the Iranian seizure of a British oil tanker, pushed prices up and further escalation holds the potential to make prices jump higher.
About Securing America’s Future Energy
Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE) is an action-oriented, nonpartisan organization that aims to reduce America’s dependence on oil. Near-total dependence on petroleum in the transportation sector undermines the nation’s economic and national security, and constrains U.S. foreign policy. To combat these threats, SAFE advocates for expanded domestic production of U.S. oil and gas resources, continued improvements in vehicle fuel efficiency, and transportation sector innovations including electric vehicles, natural gas trucks, and autonomous vehicles. In 2006, SAFE joined with General P.X. Kelley (Ret.), 28th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, and Frederick W. Smith, Chairman and CEO of FedEx Corporation, to form the Energy Security Leadership Council (ESLC), a group of business and former military leaders committed to reducing the United States’ dependence on oil. Today, the ESLC is co-chaired by Frederick W. Smith and General James T. Conway (Ret), 34th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps.
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