One more reason nation needs new fuel standards

Posted: Thursday, January 22, 2004

Subaru's decision to transform its Outback sedan into a light truck in an effort to avoid tougher fuel economy and air pollution standards is just one more reason for a national policy that would prevent such conversions.

This is not to blame Subaru. It's in the business of selling vehicles and making money, and if the company can maximize its profits legally, one can hardly blame it for that. But we can blame lawmakers and their lack of backbone. Once again, they have caved in to the auto industry and allowed automakers to drive through a giant loophole in fuel-economy regulations. Light trucks are subject to less-stringent fuel economy and emissions standards than regulations that apply to cars. ...

Other administrations have failed to stand up to the auto industry, but this one seems totally uninterested in forcing manufacturers to increase fuel efficiency. That is a particularly shortsighted approach when one considers the importance of weaning this country off its dependence on foreign oil, especially from the Mideast. ...

The Buffalo (N.Y.) News

Jan. 20

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