Today, at the Energy Department, President Bush signed into law a legislation that is claimed to be “a major step” toward energy independence and easing global warming. It will bring more fuel-efficient vehicles into auto showrooms and require wider use of ethanol. It requires automakers to increase fuel efficiency by 40 percent to an industry average 35 miles per gallon by 2020. The standard for cars today is 27.5 mpg and for trucks and SUVs 22.2 mpg.
Production of ethanol use is targeted to reach 36 billion gallons a year by 2022! This legislation is aimed at reducing US's dependency on gasoline (foreign oil) and diversifying the nation’s fuel supply. It focuses largely on conservation, calling for more energy efficiency in “light bulbs to light trucks.” Quoting President Bush:
“We make a major step ... toward reducing our dependence on oil, fighting global climate change, expanding the production of renewable fuels and giving future generations ... a nation that is stronger cleaner and more secure.”Hopefully, now there will be more players in the automobiles market manufacturing hybrid cars, trucks and more. For some time we had been toying the idea of purchasing a Toyota Prius. Perhaps it would make sense to wait and watch to see how the automobile manufacturers respond to this law. Let us know your thoughts on this new development.