Washington, D.C. – In response to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s release of new Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards, National Association of Manufacturers President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement:
“Auto manufacturers have been making historic investments to ensure that electric vehicles will have a growing place on America’s roads. However, the NAM has concerns over the three different sets of standards governing light- and medium-duty vehicles. For instance, the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed regulation on light- and medium-duty vehicles would require 67% of new manufactured vehicles to be battery electric by 2032 and is too aggressive.
“Federal and state agencies are promulgating competing rules, and the EPA’s rules, in particular, would make it costlier for manufacturers to make these vehicles and for consumers to purchase them. When you add the drastic need to build transmission lines to accommodate the demand for charging infrastructure and the challenge of obtaining critical minerals for batteries—many of which are extracted or processed in China—you create a scenario where an ambitious rule becomes a nearly impossible benchmark.
“Consumers and the industry need a more realistic path to reducing vehicle emissions. Federal and state agencies should draft rules that recognize the longer timeframe needed for our nation to build the charging infrastructure and a reliable supply chain for the critical minerals to make batteries to support more electric vehicles. Rules should also be structured to allow the industry additional time to make more electric vehicles available for consumers, and in the quantities needed to eventually achieve the administration’s goals. In addition, the federal government should not dictate the vehicle choices offered to consumers in meeting this goal. Plug-in hybrids, fuel cell electric vehicles and battery-electric cars can all help reduce vehicle emissions over time. The administration should allow the market and consumers to grow the number of electric vehicles, rather than depending on a single technology to meet this goal.
“Finally, these regulations should be harmonized to create a single unified standard for vehicle emissions, so manufacturers do not have to navigate three often-conflicting targets, which raise costs for manufacturers and consumers. The NAM looks forward to working with the administration to ensure vehicle standards meet consumer demand while providing manufacturers in the U.S. more opportunities to create jobs, develop new technologies and become even more globally competitive.”
Background: Recently, the NAM, members of the NAM’s Council of Manufacturing Associations and Conference of State Manufacturers Associations launched Manufacturers for Sensible Regulations, a coalition addressing the impact of the current regulatory onslaught coming from federal agencies.
According to the NAM’s Q2 2023 Manufacturers’ Outlook Survey, more than 63% of manufacturers report spending more than 2,000 hours per year complying with federal regulations, while more than 17% of manufacturers report spending more than 10,000 hours. The NAM survey also highlighted that only 67% of manufacturers are positive about their own company’s outlook, the lowest since Q3 2019. It shows the consequences of regulations: If the regulatory burden on manufacturers decreased, 65% of manufacturers would purchase more capital equipment, and more than 46% would increase compensation.
The National Association of Manufacturers is the largest manufacturing association in the United States, representing small and large manufacturers in every industrial sector and in all 50 states. Manufacturing employs nearly 13 million men and women, contributes $2.91 trillion to the U.S. economy annually and accounts for 55% of private-sector research and development. The NAM is the powerful voice of the manufacturing community and the leading advocate for a policy agenda that helps manufacturers compete in the global economy and create jobs across the United States. For more information about the NAM or to follow us on Twitter and Facebook, please visit www.nam.org.