Replacement EPA Boss on Board With California Gas Confab

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
replacement epa boss on board with california gas confab

Following Andrew Wheeler’s appointment as acting head of the Environmental Protection Agency, he extended an invitation to the California Air Resources Board to discuss emission regulations — a matter which former EPA administrator Scott Pruitt seemed less inclined to discuss with the state.

Mary Nichols, chairman of the board, said Wheeler reached out to state officials and the pair agreed to hold a meeting in Washington. It’s a slight easing of tensions in the cold war between D.C. and Sacramento.

Initially, the EPA hoped to convince California to compromise so the current administration could progress with its deregulation strategy for the automotive industry. However, California has drawn a bold line when it comes to rolling back the corporate fuel economy mandates passed under President Obama. Pruitt claimed the existing targets were unreasonably high after the Trump administration requested a revaluation of the standards.

Since then, the Golden State and its Air Resources Board have retaliated by filing a lawsuit claiming the EPA’s decision to roll back fuel economy targets was irresponsible. In the aftermath, Nichols noted that the agency seemed less inclined to make time for meetings with her organization. It even cancelled discussions the President said had to take place — as Pruitt was busy saying the state should forget about being able to make demands the rest of the country has to adhere to.

The White House is currently reviewing proposals from the EPA and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration that will roll back the rigorous fuel economy and emissions standards set for the coming years. Those documents are also said to include ways to circumvent California’s authority to set vehicle efficiency rules, which are tougher than the federal government’s.

While Wheeler is expected to be less overtly prickly than Pruitt, few expect him to deviate from the initial plan. Most feel he’ll stay the course while taking a more pragmatic approach. At the very least, he seems willing to speak with California.

“I am not at the moment expecting any changes in direction or changes in policy,” Nichols said. “But I hear from others who know him he is a practical person who likes to move forward and is willing to make compromises, so I am hopeful that we’ll find some things to work on together.”

[Source: Bloomberg]

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5 of 27 comments
  • Oberkanone Oberkanone on Jul 17, 2018

    One Nation, One CAFE, One Emissions. Do not give into CARB.

    • Hpycamper Hpycamper on Jul 18, 2018

      This exactly wrong. Why do we need to make every thing one size fits all? Just because it simplifies things for auto makers? Especially when it means going to a lower standard.

  • Pwrwrench Pwrwrench on Jul 18, 2018

    This can be solved with no Constitutional problems. Just put a sign in bakeries and Sacto: "We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone" That's the practice anyway, why not be honest and open about it?

    • See 1 previous
    • Art Vandelay Art Vandelay on Jul 18, 2018

      Interestingly the unintended consequence of all that, since It has been pointed out that Political Affiliation is not a protected class under civil rights law, would be for such bakers to simply proclaim they reserve the right to not bake cakes for Democrats, since the reverse has been deemed acceptable. And you dont have to refuse service to all democrats either as I am sure that I can find some Republicans that have in fact consumed a meal at the Red Hen. Unintended Consequences are always a MoFo

  • Jimbo1126 I just looked at the Hyundai website and it appears the SE SR trim has gone away. The SE is now the base trim at $45,500.
  • Jimbo1126 Even my mother, certainly no big car fan, commented that the Mark Vi was the ugliest car she'd ever seen.38,391 in 1980 to 38,398 in 1981 is an increase of 7. :)
  • Kwik_Shift Important consideration when choosing your next vehicle. Its not only your own death, or of your passengers, but the possible lifetime of crippling injuries.
  • Teddyc73 Can we all once and for all stop calling this things "tacos"? Please!
  • David S. Bear Tooth and Chief Joseph highways.