June 6, 2007 - 3:42 pm
Two alternative proposals would require cars to average 36 mpg by 2022 and trucks to average 30 mpg by 2025. Regulators would be able to set lower standards if the targets were deemed to be unreachable.
Today's standards are 27.5 mpg for cars and 22.2 mpg for light trucks.
The bill before the Senate floor would require a fleetwide average of 35 mpg by 2020 and 4percent annual increases thereafter. Again, regulators would be able to cite economic or technological reasons to set lower standards.
Environmental and consumer groups contend that guaranteed standards are needed. They are lobbying to toughen the Senate bill.