Regulatory uncertainty puts lower emissions at risk, Bozzella says

on Aug4

Bozzella: “We really do need to get beyond this notion that we’ve got a competition going between California and the federal government.” Photo credit: Greg Horvath

John Bozzella, CEO of the Global Automakers organization, has a clear take on vehicle emissions.

There simply needs to be less.

“We need further reductions in vehicle, and fleet, greenhouse gas emissions, there’s just no question about that and that’s never been the argument, said Bozzella at the CAR Management Briefing Seminars. “Customers around the world demand it, eventually customers in the U.S. will demand it and while gasoline prices remain at almost historic lows, eventually customers will demand it here and we’ve got to be ready. I gotta believe that everybody in this room would agree, that makes more sense to be more efficient and less resource intensive.”

Global Automakers represents automakers ranging from Aston Martin and Ferrari to Subaru and Nissan, as well as suppliers.

As with many issues within the automotive industry, timing is everything, emission regulation is no different.

In March, the EPA announced that it is revisiting the standard of 54.5 mpg for vehicles by the 2025 model year that were set in 2012.

By doing so, the EPA is required to determine no later than April 1 whether the 2022-25 standards established are appropriate, according to the EPA’s website.

Bozzella stressed the importance of this window due to the long lead time nature of the auto industry.

“We have engineers and product developers working on platforms and engines and products that will be in the market past 2025, that’s the reality we’re in,” Bozzella said. “So we do need some clarity. We need to understand what the way forward is going to be and we need a sense of urgency about this.”

Adding to the challenge is California and its stricter emission regulations.

“We really do need to get beyond this notion that we’ve got a competition going between California and the federal government,” said Bozzella.

While Bozzella made it clear that the various players such as OEMs and regulators can work together, he didn’t downplay the importance of doing so.

“We need to get on this and we need to get on it right now,” he said.

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