Washington, D.C.—Robbie Diamond, President and CEO of Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE), released the following statement following the release of autonomous vehicles legislation by the House Energy and Commerce Committee. In SAFE’s view, Congress has a unique opportunity to transform our transportation system with a modern, unified federal framework for autonomous vehicles (AVs).
“SAFE has endorsed many aspects of this bill from the very beginning, including federal preemption, the rewriting of existing FMVSS regulations to properly address AVs and the creation of advisory committees around data sharing and disability engagement. We praise the excellent leadership of Chairman Latta and other committee members, and look forward to continuing to work with our partners in Congress to pass legislation that will improve the way we travel, strengthen our economy, expand the mobility access for all Americans, and critically increase our national security,” said Diamond.
SAFE published an issue brief examining the provisions of the bill that outlines its many strengths and identifies areas for improvement. The brief explores the bill’s impact on individuals with disabilities, the importance of clear provisions on pre-emption and exemptions policy, while also pointing out the bill specifically and solely excludes expanded exemptions for the development of innovative technologies around low emissions vehicles. It also reviews the inclusion of advisory committees and presents additional legislative ideas.
“Congress has a historic opportunity to improve our national security and end our dependence on oil by accelerating the transition to autonomous vehicles. Clear federal rules that promote technological neutrality and allow companies to innovate will lead to alternative fuels so we are no longer dependent on an opaque and unfree oil market while saving thousands of lives per year and providing mobility to millions of people,” said Diamond.
Since early 2016, SAFE has been on the forefront of AV thought leadership and has provided concrete policy recommendations and testimony to state and federal-level legislators, agencies and the administration. SAFE’s notable publications include:
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, President, 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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