The U.S. government will report that growing demand for trucks is curbing advances in fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions. Fred Katayama reports.
Get set for a clash between automakers and U.S. regulators. The Environmental Protection Agency will report Wednesday that growing demand for trucks is holding back improvements in fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions. The report comes as cheap fuel drives sales of sport utilities, pickups and other trucks that gulp more gas than cars. The report is likely to show that trucks are becoming more efficient, but buyers' preferences for those trucks over cars is largely offsetting those efficiency gains. As consumers keep buying more trucks, automakers say it's getting harder to hit the government's 2025 goal for fleets averaging 54-and-a-half miles per gallon. Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers spokeswoman Gloria Bergquist said, "There is a huge gap looming between government projections and consumer purchases of highly fuel-efficient vehicles." But the carbon emissions reduction deal that global leaders struck in Paris Saturday could make it harder for federal regulators to compromise on that fuel economy target.