More carbon please

Cleaner cars? More efficient cars? We don’t need no stinkin clean efficiency! Bring back the good old polluting carbon-emitting gas guzzlers of yesteryear, says Trump.

The Trump administration is expected to launch an effort in coming days to weaken greenhouse gas emissions and fuel economy standards for automobiles, handing a victory to car manufacturers and giving them ammunition to potentially roll back industry standards worldwide.

Which do you want? Cleaner air or higher profits for car manufacturers? Tough choice, ain’t it.

Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, is expectedto frame the initiative as eliminating a regulatory burden on automakers that will result in more affordable trucks, vans and sport utility vehicles for buyers, according to people familiar with the plan.

And to hell with the buyers’ children and grandchildren who will have to deal with the rising sea levels and dried-up rivers all the sooner.

“This is certainly a big deal,” said Robert Stavins, director of the Harvard environmental economics program. “The result will be more gas-guzzling vehicles on the road, greater total gasoline consumption, and a significant increase in carbon dioxide emissions.”

Achievement unlocked.

The rules, aimed at cutting tailpipe emissions of carbon dioxide, a major contributor to global warming, were one of the two pillars of Mr. Obama’s climate change legacy. Put forth in 2012, they would have required automakers to nearly double the average fuel economy of new cars and trucks to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025.

If fully implemented, the rules would have cut oil consumption by about 12 billion barrels and reduced carbon dioxide pollution by about six billion tons over the lifetime of all the cars affected by the regulations, according to E.P.A. projections.

The rules also would have put the United States, historically a laggard in fuel economy regulations, at the forefront worldwide in the manufacture of electric and highly fuel efficient vehicles. The United States and Canada are the only major nations that have adopted mandatory emissions standards through 2025. The European Union has only recently proposed standards for 2025 and 2030, while China has only started to work on standards for those years.

Less restrictive regulations in the United States could provide an opening for automakers to push for more lenient standards elsewhere as well, leading to the emission of more pollution by cars around the world.

Don doesn’t care. Don won’t be alive to see the worst of the consequences.

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