The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) issued a statement criticizing the new agreement on a vehicle scrappage program emerging from the House Energy and Commerce Committee. (Earlier post.)
The vehicle scrappage program would offer vouchers of $3,500 or $4,500 for consumers to retire their vehicles and purchase new ones. Unlike the scrappage bill introduced in January which aims to accelerate the modernization of the US fleet to a more fuel-efficient one, the program just announced aims primarily to clear Detroit’s unsold inventory from the storage lots, according to the ACEEE.
While a vehicle to be purchased under the new program would be required in most cases to meet a fuel economy threshold, the thresholds are low. A standard pickup could qualify with a sticker value of only 15 miles per gallon, well below the current corporate average fuel economy standard for trucks.
We would welcome incentives to retire gas guzzlers and encourage the purchase of efficient vehicles, but the proposal just isn’t there yet.—ACEEE Transportation Program Director Therese Langer