Securing America's Future Energy

SAFE: Heavy-Duty Truck Rule Would Strengthen U.S. Economic, National Security by Reducing Oil Dependence

Contact: Ellen Carey
Number: 202-461-2382
Second phase of fuel efficiency rule for heavy-duty trucks improves energy security by reducing oil consumption and protecting U.S. economy from volatile global oil market

Washington, D.C. – The newly proposed EPA draft rule for medium- and heavy-duty trucks will increase the fuel efficiency of America’s shipping backbone while generating numerous benefits for American economic and national security, as well as for consumers. This rule, developed through engaging stakeholders from all aspects of the transportation economy, marks a critical step in the effort to reduce the United States’ dependence on oil. The regulations as proposed would go into effect starting with the 2021 model year and will apply to tractor-trailers and buses, as well as large pick-up trucks and vans.

“The United States’ near-exclusive dependence on oil to power transportation has routinely forced America’s military to protect oil supply lines around the globe. I am pleased to see that so many in the trucking industry support the proposed rule,” said General James T. Conway, former 34th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps and co-Chairman of SAFE’s Energy Security Leadership Council.

“Increasing the efficiency of a sector of the economy that is such a large and growing oil consumer will strengthen our national security, give our armed forces more flexibility, and make our servicemen and women less likely to go into harm’s way,” Conway added. “Following the lead of the bipartisan 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act signed by President Bush, this rule is a major step forward in making America more energy secure, as we also increase domestic production and fuel diversity. Smart government policy is sometimes required to counter the actions of an unstable and manipulated global oil market.”

“This rule is the product of a collaborative process, and we are pleased to see NHTSA and EPA taking positive steps to increase American energy security,” said SAFE President and CEO Robbie Diamond. “Today, the U.S. transportation sector relies on oil for 92 percent of its fuel, a virtual monopoly that ties us to a volatile, cartel-influenced global oil market. SAFE looks forward to reviewing the rule in more detail and sharing comments with the administration, including ways to accelerate the deployment of alternative fuels.”

Although trucks make up only 7 percent of the total vehicles on the roads, they consume 25 percent of fuel. Furthermore, the medium- and heavy-duty segment is expected to comprise the fastest growing portion of U.S. oil demand between today and 2040, with consumption increasing by nearly 1 mbd, from 2.8 mbd to 3.7 mbd.

As the world’s largest oil consumer, the United States is dangerously vulnerable to the economic side effects of oil price spikes. Moreover, the government spends up to $83 billion a year to maintain the flow of oil around the globe, putting the lives of American servicemen, women, and civilians at risk.

While it is critical that the United States improve the efficiency of its petroleum-powered fleet, there is also an urgent need to diversify the types of fuels available to the transportation sector. The creation of a long-term strategic energy security policy, one that addresses both fuel supply and demand, should promote the development and adoption of alternative fuel and drive technologies that reduce American oil dependence. The result is a country that is safer, more secure, and prosperous.

About Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE)
Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE)
is a nonpartisan organization that aims to reduce America’s dependence on oil and improve U.S. energy security to bolster national security and strengthen the economy. SAFE advocates for expanded domestic production of U.S. oil and gas resources, continued improvements in fuel efficiency, and in the long-term, breaking oil’s stranglehold on the transportation sector through alternatives like natural gas for heavy-duty trucks and plug-in electric vehicles. In 2006, SAFE joined with General P.X. Kelley (Ret.), 28th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, and Frederick W. Smith, Chairman, President, and CEO of FedEx Corporation, to form the Energy Security Leadership Council (ESLC), a group of business and former military leaders committed to reducing U.S. oil dependence.

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