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EPA Clean Car Standard helps the economy

The history of the Clean Air Act has been a successfully one.

Local elected officials and civic leaders attended a press conference on October 17, 2018 to condemn plans by President Trump to reverse current Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) standards for clean cars. According to the speakers not only have there been economic gains, the effect has been commensurate with a healthier Hoosier state overall.

Led by Indiana State Senator Eddie Melton, one by one speakers shared how standards fueled by innovation and investment in the automotive industry have created new manufacturing and engineering jobs in Indiana. For Indiana, the growth began when  the Obama Administration set new groundbreaking fuel efficiency standards in 2012. The goal­––by Model Year 2025 cars and light-duty trucks must have a fuel efficient of 54.4 mpg.

Trump’s plan would roll back that 2012 agreement between former President Bar- ack Obama’s administration and the auto industry.

State Senator Eddie Melton said the continual improvement in fuel economy and reduction in the greenhouse gas emission is “a win-win” for everyone.

Melton described Indiana as a leading manufacturing state in steel, engine industries and components used in the fuel-efficient cars. Detraction from clean car standards would decrease the supply demand and subsequently, suppress Indiana’s economic growth.

The Gary NAACP Chapter Vice President, Willie Miller, encouraged Hoosiers to act.

Miller asked Hoosiers to contact their elected officials to let them know they oppose changes to the EPA Clean Car Standards.

His message was a call to action.

Standing in front of the Genesis Center’s Fusion Sculpture, Jerome Prince, Lake County Democratic chairman and county assessor, joined state Sen. Eddie Melton, and Willie Miller in support of clean cars. Several leaders carried signs that read “Cleaner Cars, Healthier Lungs.”

Prince said Environmental Protection Agency Acting Administrator Andrew Wheeler’s proposal to relax stringent fuel  efficiency standards for vehicles would be “extremely detrimental” for Northwest Indiana. In 2017, the Manufacturers’ News, Inc. reported Indiana added manufacturing jobs for a sixth straight year since 2011. Those job gains were led by the transportation equipment industry with most of the top five employment cities being in Northwest Indiana. Melton said, “Weakening these clean car standards will suppress Indiana job growth and innovation.”

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