Typically, when an industry is facing a fresh round of Environmental Protection Agency regulations, the conversation is about job losses, regulatory overreach, and how quickly a federal court can issue an injunction.
So with heavy-duty trucks about to face EPA fuel-efficiency rules for the second time in five years, where's the sturm und drang?
Sources familiar with discussions about the rule tell National Journal they expect to see an overall requirement of a 40 percent increase in fuel economy compared to 2010 levels by 2027. And industry officials are excited because they hope it will save truckers at the pump.
"This is one of the few rules that actually gives us something back in terms of profitability," said Glen Kedzie, vice president of environmental affairs for the American Trucking Associations. "We operate on razor-thin margins "¦ so of course we have concerns, but we're in favor of anything that can save on fuel bills."
Trucks make up just 4 percent of the traffic on the road, but EPA says they account for 20 percent of the greenhouse-gas emissions from vehicles.
As with the first phase of the standards, implemented in 2011, the rule will impose different efficiency goals for truck bodies and engines, although this phase will also include trailers for the first time. Because the rule will be covering a range of vehicles, from garbage trucks to 18-wheelers, the EPA is expected to have specialized emissions standards for different sizes and styles of trucks (the mileage of a truck varies widely based on its design and what it's carrying).