Court rejects Tesla’s request for stricter fuel consumption penalties
A U.S. appeals court denied Tesla’s request to reinstate increased civil penalties for automakers that fail to meet U.S. fuel economy standards. Reuters has called. In April, the U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals denied Tesla’s request for immediate action pending a review by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In August, Tesla again asked the court to take action. Last week, the court denied Tesla’s request — a win for automakers that don’t meet US fuel economy standards (requirements).
Tesla has previously been criticized for selling loans to other automakers. Tesla sells the credits to help these automakers meet state vehicle emissions requirements, but has found those credits aren’t as valuable due to changes in regulations by the Trump administration.
Automakers that fail to meet these fuel economy standards have complained that increasing penalties could cost them about $1 billion a year for not complying and could result in them paying higher rates on loans, used to comply with the rules. The group of automakers opposing Tesla’s demands included so-called EV leaders General Motors, Toyota, Ford and Volkswagen. Note that GM, which sold just 26 electric vehicles in the fourth quarter of 2021, was hailed as the nation’s electric car leader by President Biden.
The group told the Court of Appeals, “That Tesla might benefit from greater certainty about the value of the accumulated CAFE credits is hardly a reason to abandon an ongoing administrative proceeding.”
Although carbon credits allow companies to “offset” their greenhouse gas emissions, I personally see no value. If Company A produced 100× greenhouse gases and bought credit from Tesla to “offset” those excesses, it would not erase the greenhouse gases produced.
Yes, I know that if Tesla weren’t the world leader in electric vehicles, we would have a lot more greenhouse gases. However, I’ve always found the whole carbon credit system a bit confusing – if not fake. And the criticism I’ve seen of Tesla for selling carbon credits is also a bit wrong in my opinion. The system was not set up by Tesla or on behalf of Tesla. It was set up to get automakers to try harder, but it clearly isn’t powerful enough to go far.
In the end, why would you be critical of Tesla selling the carbon credits to an automaker that has caused too much greenhouse gas pollution, but not be critical of that automaker? manufacturing too much greenhouse gas pollution?
Also, you would think our government leaders would want to enforce their own rules on fuel economy standards. However, the court ruled in favor of automakers, and that allows automakers to do more harm to this planet.
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