Mayors From Across Ohio Call on EPA and NHTSA to Keep Fuel Economy Standards Strong

Mayors of Dayton, Columbus, Cincinnati, and Chillicothe Highlight How Fuel Economy Standards Are Benefitting Their Communities

October 3, 2018

Mayors from several Ohio cities today joined together to discuss the impact of strong standards on automotive jobs, technology innovation, investment, and manufacturing in Ohio and to urge the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to reconsider their proposal to roll back the standards.The mayors said they were concerned about how a roll back ofthe Corporate Average Fuel Economy and Clean Car Standards would impact their communities. The agencies proposed rolling back clean car and fuel economy standards by freezing them for all passenger vehicles at model year 2020 levels through model year 2026 in August.

“In Columbus we are moving forward and making our city a model for connected cities of the future through Smart Columbus,” said Mayor Andrew J. Ginther of Columbus. “At The Ohio State University, we have the Center for Automotive Research (CAR), the preeminent research center in sustainable and safe mobility in the United States. We are preparing the next generation of automotive leaders who will build safer, cleaner and advanced vehicles. By continuing our current fuel economy standards, we are supporting Ohio jobs and innovation and moving central Ohio forward.”

“Ohio jobs depend on America remaining a leading destination for domestic and global investment in fuel efficient and clean vehicle technology,” said Mayor Nan Whaley of Dayton. “Stepping away from leadership on fuel economy and emissions reduction could put Ohio businesses and jobs at risk, and cede tomorrow’s jobs to other nations.  It would also mean dirtier air in our communities and less money in the pockets of Ohio families.”

In 2015, there were over 1.6 million cars, trucks, and SUVs built in Ohio and 70 percent of the light vehicles built in North America are built within 500 miles of the state. Currently, nearly 30,000 workers are building technology that directly contributes to improving fuel economy and reducing emissions in vehicles.

“Automakers and suppliers have invested billions in our state and that investment has created jobs,” said Mayor John Cranley of Cincinnati. “Rolling back those standards risks the jobs created by investments in each of our communities. Strong standards mean more investment, more jobs, and cleaner air.”

“People in Chillicothe and around the state are working to make the components and materials needed for us to have cars, trucks, and SUVs that get world class fuel economy,” said Mayor Luke Feeney of Chillicothe. “We cannot turn our back on them and put their jobs and livelihoods in jeopardy. The agencies need to drop this proposal and keep the standards strong to ensure good jobs and clean air for generations to come.”

A new car meeting the 2025 carbon pollution requirements will save consumers nearly $4,000 compared to the average vehicle on the road today.

“Smart standards don’t just create and sustain jobs and help our environment, they also reduce U.S. dependence on foreign oil, protect consumers from increasing gas prices, and save all drivers money at the pump—no matter what kind of vehicle they choose to drive,” said Lee Geisse, the regional program manager for the BlueGreen Alliance in Ohio.

“America should lead the effort to make cleaner vehicles, but halting progress will mean up to 60,000 fewer U.S. jobs, according to the administration’s own analysis,” said Luke Tonachel, director of the Clean Vehicles And Fuels Project at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “Adding insult to injury, the plan would mean more carbon pollution—leading to more extreme weather and unhealthy air days.”

Listen to the audio from the mayors’ press teleconference call.