CONTACT: Hannah Hertlein, hannah@impactcommunications-
CARSON CITY — Today, the Biden administration announced the White House will resume the policy of respecting each state’s authority to adopt stronger vehicle tailpipe pollution standards.
The federal Clean Air Act allows states to set vehicle emission standards that are tougher than federal requirements, to address persistent air pollution problems. In 2020, Governor Sisolak took advantage of this authority and announced the Clean Cars Nevada initiative, which would result in stronger emission rules for climate pollution from vehicles and a new requirement for automakers to increase the number of plug-in electric cars and trucks available for sale in the state. The policy is a prominent part of the Nevada Climate Strategy, as transportation is Nevada’s biggest source of climate pollution and greenhouse gases.
However, in early 2020, the previous federal administration revoked state authority to adopt these standards. Shortly after, a coalition of states, including Nevada, challenged the decision in court.
Today’s proposal, if adopted, would resolve that uncertainty and give Nevada the green light to move forward with the implementation of Clean Cars Nevada after the rule is finalized later this year. It also would clear a path for Washington State, Virginia, Minnesota, and potentially other states to join the 13 states and Washington D.C., which have already adopted the Clean Cars program.
Advocates for public health, climate action, consumer protection, and environmental justice celebrated the Biden Administration’s move:
“Breathing in air pollution generated from the transportation sector can have negative health effects for our lungs and heart including more asthma attacks and COPD exacerbations,” said Dr. Bernadette Longo, RN of Nevada Nurses Association and the Orvis School of Nursing. “Allowing states to strengthen vehicle emission standards is one way to accelerate our goals towards cleaner and healthier air for all.”
“This proposal by the White House is good news for Nevada consumers,” said Alfred Artis, Sustainability Policy Analyst at Consumer Reports. “The Clean Cars Nevada initiative is an important and innovative program, and today’s proposal would ensure that Nevada can move forward. Seventy-three percent of adult drivers in Nevada are interested in getting an electric vehicle in the future, according to a new CR survey. This Clean Cars initiative would help reduce climate pollution by making it easier for Nevadans to find money-saving electric vehicles to buy at local dealerships.”
“This confirmation of Nevada’s Clean Car authority can’t come too soon,” said Travis Madsen, Transportation Program Director at Southwest Energy Efficiency Project. “The faster we move to electrify our cars and trucks, the bigger the benefits will be. Cleaning up passenger vehicles in line with our climate strategy will save Nevadans about $20 billion through mid-century.”
“The Black community and other communities of color are at greater risk of developing asthma, lung cancer, and other diseases because of harmful air pollution caused by tailpipe emissions,” said Dr. Mary House, CEO of CHR, Inc. (Caring, Helping & Restoring Lives). “As an electric car driver, mother, and grandma, I am grateful to the Biden administration for reversing these dangerous emissions rollbacks, and to Governor Sisolak for taking action so our children can enjoy clean breathable air.
About Nevada Clean Cars Coalition: The Nevada Clean Cars Coalition consists of a diverse group of business leaders, conservationists, science and public health advocates, labor representatives, community organizations, local governments, consumer groups, and others who share the same desire to bring the many benefits of Clean Car Standards to Nevada. www.NevadaCleanCars.org