BlueGreen Alliance | Fuel Economy Standards Drive Investment, Manufacturing, and Jobs in Michigan

Fuel Economy Standards Drive Investment, Manufacturing, and Jobs in Michigan

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, under Administrator Pruitt, is expected shortly to announce the conclusion of its midterm review of the nation’s landmark fuel economy standards.

March 30, 2018

Jobs in communities all over the country—and America’s competitiveness in manufacturing critical technology—could be at risk should the Trump administration step back from these highly successful fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards for vehicles. In anticipation of the Environmental Protection Agency’s pending announcement, Frank Houston, regional program manager for the BlueGreen Alliance in Michigan, said:

“Smart, sound fuel economy standards have driven investment in manufacturing and job creation in Michigan and around the country. We have nearly 70,000 workers in Michigan building the materials and parts specifically needed to make our cars and trucks more fuel efficient to meet strong fuel economy standards. Because of the innovation and leadership of Michigan businesses and workers, our state is positioned to reap the benefits of continued leadership on fuel efficiency. If the EPA decides to write new rules, we urge them to keep strong fuel economy rules to ensure that the investment in innovation and job growth continues in Michigan. Stepping away from these job-creating standards puts our state’s auto industry, auto suppliers, and economic progress in jeopardy.”


The BlueGreen Alliance recently released a report entitled Driving Investment: How Fuel Efficiency is Rebuilding American Manufacturing tracking investment in the nation’s automotive plants over the past decade as automakers have implemented current fuel economy and vehicle greenhouse gas standards. The report illustrates how standards drive innovation and enhance manufacturing growth, and it shows how what are often described as the “costs” of compliance with clean vehicle standards actually represent a multi-billion dollar reinvestment in American manufacturing and jobs nationwide. Specifically the report found:

  • A total of $76 billion in new and promised investment in the nation’s automotive plants since 2008.
  • In Michigan alone, there has been over $23 billion in new and promised investment in 41 factories since 2008. 
  • U.S. automakers have invested $64 billion in facilities across the country, completing 258 investments at 100 factories.
  • An additional $12 billion in investments in 37 facilities are underway or promised by 2020 nationwide.

While some of that $76 billion represents business-as-usual investment, a significant portion is new, added, or enhanced investment in the innovative products and manufacturing processes to meet the nation’s commonsense fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards. View a visualization of those investments here

Driving Investment builds on a May 2017 report, Supplying Ingenuity II: U.S. Suppliers of Key Clean Fuel-Efficient Vehicle Technologies, from the BlueGreen Alliance and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), which underscores how leading vehicle fuel economy and greenhouse gas standards have been critical to the automotive recovery, and remain critical to sustaining it. The report found:

  • More than 288,000 workers in 1,200 factories and engineering facilities in 48 states are building the components, materials and technology needed to make today’s vehicles more fuel efficient than ever.
  • 70,000 workers in Michigan were found to be building technology that specifically contributes to improving fuel economy.
  • Combined with our interactive map, you can see the economic reach of this enhanced investment in a new generation of cleaner, more fuel-efficient vehicles.