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Take Action to Make the Federal "Clean Care Standards" Stronger

Samantha Dynowski

The Sierra Club has spent years defending the federal clean car standards– and for good reason: They are our nation’s single most influential policy to slash climate pollution. 

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Image by (Joenomias) Menno de Jong from Pixabay

The short version of the clean car standards saga goes like this: In 2012, the Obama administration made history by finalizing strong vehicle pollution standards for new cars and light trucks through 2025. When the Trump administration took office in 2017, one of its biggest attacks on climate was severely weakening these standards. It also revoked a long-standing California waiver under the Clean Air Act that allowed the state, as well as 14 other states and the District of Columbia, to be even more ambitious in reducing vehicle pollution and cleaning up the air.


The Sierra Club defended the clean car standards against Trump’s attacks in court, during public comment periods, and in the media. We cut no slack for automakers who spent years lobbying to weaken these important standards. 


Now, the Biden administration has an opportunity to make up for lost time and shift the nation to electric cars, trucks, and buses. Strong clean car standards on the federal level will have an impact here in Connecticut where we have some of the worst air quality in the nation, and vehicle emissions represent almost 40% of our state’s greenhouse gas emissions. Strong clean car standards are essentially the policy keys needed to accelerate EV adoption and help the U.S. reach our air quality and climate goals this decade! 


The transition to electric vehicles will reduce harmful pollution that disproportionately burdens low-income communities and communities of color. We must push to ensure that everyone who chooses to drive can consider a cleaner car, and that will take significant investments and unwavering commitments from automakers.



We are asking you to send a message to the EPA today to strengthen the clean car proposal. Join us as we urge Biden’s EPA to finalize a rule that offers no loopholes for automakers and achieves the ambition we need to tackle the climate crisis. There are so many reasons this fight is personal, so make sure to add a personal comment when you submit your letter. 


Thank you for taking action!


Samantha Dynowski is State Director of Sierra Club Connecticut.

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