The State & Environmental Impact Center

Thirteen AGs Urged NHTSA to Reinstate CAFE Standard Penalty

September 20, 2021

California Attorney General Rob Bonta and New York Attorney General Letitia James led a coalition of thirteen attorneys general in submitting a letter to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) urging the agency to reinstate the full penalty fee for automakers that fail to meet corporate average fuel economy standards. In 2016, NHTSA put that fee into place in response to an instruction from Congress. This proceeding involves the Trump administration’s third attempt to reduce the penalty after the first two were vacated by courts. Pointing to climate concerns and arguing that there is no valid reason to keep the penalty low, the coalition called on the agency to withdraw the Trump-era rule and restore the initial penalty.