WASHINGTON, May 21 – Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) today praised President Obama for ordering better fuel-efficiency standards for cars and trucks.
Linking the move to the worsening environmental disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, Sanders said increased fuel efficiency will save consumers money, help the environment and reduce reliance on oil from risky offshore drilling.
“The future of our energy system has got to be energy efficiency, making sure we have the cars and trucks that get good mileage,” Sanders said. “We have the technology now to do that. In my view, that is the future of energy in America.”
In addition to stronger fuel standards, Sanders has called for a moratorium on offshore drilling. Enforcing new fuel standards already set to take effect would cut the cost of gasoline by $1 a gallon by 2030. Opening the entire Atlantic and Pacific coasts to oil drilling would shave only 3-cents a gallon off the price of gas by 2030.
Obama announced a new national policy to reduce exhaust from cars and light trucks beyond requirements already in place. The president also directed for the first time steps to lower greenhouse-gas pollution from medium- and heavy-duty trucks.
Obama’s executive order directs the Environmental Protection Agency and the Transportation Department to develop stricter fuel and emissions standards than the average 35.5 miles a gallon required by 2016. The president also offered help developing new vehicles like electric cars.
Sanders is the only member of the Senate majority caucus to sit on both the energy and environment committees.