Nearly 100 conservative leaders voice support for Trump’s CAFE reforms

By Chris White

More than 90 prominent conservatives signed a letter Wednesday urging President Donald Trump to push forward on major reforms to a California program created decades ago to regulate fuel consumption.

Former Sen. Jim DeMint of South Carolina and tax reformer Grover Norquist were among a slew of conservatives to encourage dramatic changes to the state’s Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards. Trump believes California’s regulations hurt businesses and citizens.

“CAFE standards were established in 1975 during a time of grave national concern over fuel scarcity and America’s reliance on imported energy,” the letter notes. “[A] review of the purpose and effectiveness of existing CAFE standards is long overdue.”

The letter also notes that the “2012 standards are proving too ambitious, costly, and simply not viable for automakers from a practical or safety standpoint,” before highlighting reports from the National Auto Dealers Association showing mandates “increase the cost of vehicles by an average of $3,000.”

Trump etched out a proposal in July seeking to remove California’s ability to set its own standards. The move will effectively cap federal fuel economy requirements at 2020 levels, which under current law requires at least a 35-mpg average.

Former President Barack Obama placed the level at roughly 50 mpg by 2025. The Golden State got permissions from the Obama administration to issue its own higher emissions standards. They require cars get 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. The rules would cut 540 million metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions and save consumers money, according to some estimates.

California Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown has painted himself as one of Trump’s chief antagonists.

Brown, a Democrat, signed a bill in September effectively prohibiting new federal offshore oil drilling along California’s coast, and announced that he opposes plans to expand crude exploration on public lands in the state.

The legislation blocks the Trump administration’s plan to expand offshore oil drilling through the prohibition on new leases for new construction of oil and gas-related infrastructure, such as oil pipelines.

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One thought on “Nearly 100 conservative leaders voice support for Trump’s CAFE reforms

  1. EVs Charging, Impact on NE Grid and CO2 Reduction

    RE proponents claim EVs would be charged at night, and that it would “flatten the demand” curve. In reality, peak demands would occur at night, instead of during the day.

    – NE monthly average travel is about 130.678/12 = 10.89 billion miles; summer monthly maximum about 10.89 x 1.14 = 12.41 b miles, winter monthly minimum about 10.89/1.14 = 9.55 b miles. Daily averages, such as for a holiday weekend, likely would vary more than 14% from the annual average.

    The mix of light duty vehicles, LDVs, is assumed to require 0.350 kWh/mile, as measured by the vehicle meter, which would require 56.543 TWh/y to be fed to the NE grid to charge the LDVs during the year, if gas turbines were used at 50% efficiency. BTW, wind and solar would be unsuitable without TWh-scale energy storage, as people do need to reliably charge their vehicles to get to work.

    – If the charging of NE EVs were evenly distributed from 10 pm to 6 am, every day, the NE summer nighttime demand increase would be 1.14 x 56.543 billion kWh/y/(8 x 365)/1000 = 22060 MW. See table 1.

    – If the charging of NE EVs were evenly distributed during 24 hours of the day, the NE summer around-the-clock demand increase would be 7353 MW. See table 1.

    – That would be a significant increase of the normal nighttime demand of about 12000 MW. The normal daytime peak demand is about 22000 MW, and about 24500 MW during the late afternoons of hot summer days.

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