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Washington, DC -- The Senate Commerce Committee today unveiled an amendment to legislation introduced by Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Olympia Snowe (R-ME), and Daniel Inouye (D-HI) that would increase the fuel economy of passenger vehicles by 10 miles per gallon over 10 years.

This “10 in 10” legislation would reduce vehicular greenhouse gas emissions by 18 percent below projected levels; save 2.1 million barrels of oil per day.

The following is Senator Feinstein’s statement.

“I’m heartened to learn that the Commerce Committee has accepted the major elements of the Ten in Ten legislation I introduced with Senators Snowe and Inouye to close the SUV loophole and increase the fuel economy of our nation’s fleet of passenger vehicles.

Achieving this increase is doable with present technology.  And I believe it has a realistic chance to pass the United States Senate, and hopefully be enacted into law.

The core of the bill remains the same:  it increases fuel economy for passenger cars and light trucks by 10 miles by gallon over 10 years, reaching 35 miles per gallon. 

It also maintains the fundamental structure of the bill – adjusting mileage standards by classes of vehicle based on size, weight, and other relevant characteristics.  The Secretary of Transportation will retain the discretion to decide the most appropriate combination of mileage improvements for each vehicle class that will get the nation-wide average to 35 miles per gallon. 

This structure is fair to American manufacturers. 

This amendment, however, goes beyond the Ten in Ten bill in some areas.

  • It requires that the fuel economy of medium and heavy duty trucks be improved by 4 percent per year, a comparable rate to passenger vehicles.
  • And it extends the fuel economy increases of the entire fleet beyond 2020 by an additional 4 percent per year.

This is an ambitious program and will increase the fuel economy of every class of passenger vehicles over the next ten years.  I hope the Committee will approve this legislation next week.”