Clean Air Watch – EPA to Congress: low-sulfur gas would cost only a penny a gallon

Here is a letter to Congress from the US EPA clarifying the the scope and cost of gasoline changes related to the so-called Tier 3 clean-car program under consideration.

photo by hectore via flickr

This ought to put to rest the oil industry charges that EPA is planning to do more than just reduce sulfur in gasoline levels, and that the changes would cost as much as a quarter a gallon. This letter backs up what we have been saying since last October: EPA can make real smog reductions just by reducing the sulfur content of gas, and the cost is so small that no one would notice. Note, by the way, that the projected cost of a penny a gallon wouldn’t happen until 2017.

UNITED STATES ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY
WASHINGTON, D.C. 20460

FEB 27 2012

OFFICE OF
AIR AND RADIATION

Honorable Ed Whitfield U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Congressman Whitfield:

Thank for your letter of December 19, 2011, co-signed by 67 of your colleagues, sharing concerns a bout the potential impacts and the rulemaking processes of two upcoming U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed rules: the ”Tier 3″ light-duty vehicle emissions and gasoline standards, and the refinery sector rulemaking.

The EPA is developing the Tier 3 standards to respond to the critical need to improve air quality, and to enable a harmonized national vehicle emissions control program. This rule would reduce motor vehicle emissions and help state and local areas attain and maintain the existing health-based air quality standards in a cost-effective and timely way. Lower sulfur gasoline is necessary to operate the pollution control equipment to achieve new Tier 3 vehicle standards, and will facilitate the development of lower cost technologies to improve fuel economy. Improvements in fuel economy reduce gasoline consumption and save consumers money.

Read the full story here.

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