Press Releases

Senator Feinstein Applauds EPA Decision to Grant California Waiver to Regulate Emissions from Automobiles

Senator Feinstein sponsored a law that required EPA to issue decision on California waiver no later than today, June 30, 2009

Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein today applauded the decision of Lisa Jackson, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), to grant a Clean Air Act waiver to California to regulate tailpipe emissions.  This will allow California and at least 13 other states plus the District of Columbia to curb cumulative greenhouse gas emissions from cars and trucks by about 450 million metric tons below projected levels by 2020.

“This is terrific news,” said Senator Feinstein. “This effectively means that California and at least 13 other states plus the District of Columbia will be able to proceed to regulate greenhouse gas emissions produced by automobiles. This is a major step forward, because it will affect so much of the United States.  I believe it will set the tone for the regulation of greenhouse gases in the future.”

In 2002, California enacted the first state law (AB 1493) to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles by 30 percent below projected levels by 2016 – but the State required a waiver under the Clean Air Act to implement the emissions standard.

California applied for a Clean Air Act waiver in 2005, but after much delay, the State was denied the waiver by the Bush Administration in December 2007. News reports indicated that former EPA Administrator Stephen Johnson had overruled the scientific and legal recommendations of EPA staff. California submitted a new waiver application in January 2009.

Senator Feinstein sponsored legislation, enacted as part of the Omnibus Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2009 (P.L. 111-8), which required the EPA to issue a new decision on California’s waiver request no later than today, June 30, 2009.

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