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Nevada criticizes new Trump rule that reduces clean car standards

Nevada environment officials are speaking out against a federal rule issued this week that rolls back cleaner car standards.

The rule, announced Tuesday by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Environmental Protection Agency, reduces fuel efficiency standards to an annual 1.5 percent miles-per-gallon increase for model years 2021 through 2026. Standards issued under the Obama administration required about 5 percent annual increases to fuel efficiency, the news release said.

The federal government’s news release touted the move as the “largest deregulatory initiative” of the Trump administration. But Nevada officials say it will increase pollution and cost more money in fuel consumption.

“This rollback hurts Nevadans by undermining deployment of new clean vehicle technologies, increasing tailpipe emissions that harm public health, and exacerbating climate change through increased air pollution,” a joint statement from the Nevada Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the Governor’s Office of Energy reads. “And most importantly, it will cost consumers more money at the gas pump during these most difficult and uncertain financial times.”

Meanwhile, the statement says Gov. Steve Sisolak’s administration is increasing efforts to address climate change.

“Reducing harmful air pollution and fostering vibrant communities requires steady, but aggressive increases in vehicle efficiency standards that save consumers money,” the statement said. “This rollback undermines our efforts to rapidly decarbonize Nevada’s transportation sector to help protect the health of Nevada’s children and families, and create needed new jobs as we expand our role in the clean energy economy.”

Contact Blake Apgar at bapgar@reviewjournal.com or 702-387-5298. Follow @blakeapgar on Twitter.

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