Heavy Duty Vehicle Fuel Economy Matters to All Americans
President Obama announced a plan to bolster the fuel economy of the nation’s medium- and heavy-duty trucks. The new rules, to be prepared by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Transportation (DOT), will expand on the first-ever fuel economy standards for heavy-duty vehicles finalized in the administration’s first term. The current rules raised fuel efficiency standards for model year 2014-2018 vehicles by between 9 and 23 percent, with the larger increases impacting the less efficient vehicles. While heavy-duty vehicles represent just four percent of registered vehicles on the road in the U.S., they account for roughly a quarter of on-road oil consumption. A few more facts about fuel consumption from heavy-duty vehicles:
- The first round of standards will save vehicle owners and operators an estimated $50 billion in fuel costs and save a projected 530 million barrels of oil.
- According to White House estimates, an operator of a new 2018 semi-truck could pay for the technology upgrades in under a year and realize a net savings of $73,000 through reduced fuel costs over the truck’s useful life.
- AT&T, through its acquisition of more than 7,500 alternative-fuel vehicles for its corporate fleet, has purchased 7.7 million fewer gallons of gasoline from the beginning of the program through the end of 2012.
- Since the development of the 2014-2018 rules, engine efficiency and overall fuel economy has increased 50 percent, from about 6.5 miles per gallon to about 9.75 miles per gallon.
- Every mile per gallon gained in fuel economy is worth thousands of dollars in fuel cost savings per truck, per year.
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