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GM, Toyota, Fiat-Chrysler intervenes – Axios



The other side: Four other major car manufacturers – Ford, VW, Honda and BMW – did not participate in the intervention announced Monday. Last summer, the four reached an agreement with California on stricter standards through the mid-2020s.

Why it matters: The strong divide among gigantic car manufacturers signals how the mighty industry struggles to navigate through one of the thinnest regulatory authorities fighting for years – and one that was fought over one of the Obama beams – the climate agenda of the time.

  • The Department of Transportation and the EPA last year proposed freezing Obama-era standards in place (though the EPA has suggested that the final version of the plan to weaken the Obama rules may still require small increases in severity.)

Where it states: The Trump administration said last month that it is calling California's waiver of the Clean Air Act to introduce its own vehicle emissions regulations that roughly a dozen other states follow.

  • California and about two dozen other states sued the administration over the recall shortly after it happened.

What's New: The Global Automakers group announced the intervention on Monday, but it also includes players outside that group including GM.

So it happens under the auspices of a group called "Coalition for Sustainable Automotive Regulation."

  • "The decision to intervene in the lawsuit is about how the standard should be applied, not what the standard should be," John Bozzella, CEO of Global Automakers, said in a statement.
  • "The safety of a national program, with reasonable, achievable standards, is the surest way to reduce emissions as quickly as possible," he said.

Intrigue: Honda is a member of Global Automakers, but declined to participate in the trial.

  • "Honda is not a participant in this lawsuit, and does not contribute any funds to support our trade union activities in this area," the company said in a statement to Axios.
  • "We have been very clear about avoiding protracted and costly litigation on this issue, which will result in a lot of regulatory uncertainty."

What they say: Sen. Tom Carper, the top Democrat in the Senate environmental panel, attacked the move of GM, Toyota and others to join the case on the Trump administration's side.

  • "By aligning themselves with this administration's reckless and illegal proposals, these companies are actively challenging the rights of states to set their own emission standards and tackle the climate crisis," he said in a statement.

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