The Obama administration’s Department of Transportation established higher fuel efficiency standards in May—known as the Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards—that will reach 35.5 miles per gallon by 2016. At the same time, the Environmental Protection Agency, using its power to regulate carbon dioxide emissions, set a tailpipe emissions standard of 250 grams per mile for vehicles sold in 2016, down from 380 grams per mile in 2009, and roughly equivalent to what vehicles meeting the new mileage standard would emit. This will result in a cumulative decrease of 165 megatons of CO2 by 2016. The new standards could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 900 million metric tons, equivalent to taking 177 million cars off the road.
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