“It’ll strengthen our nation’s energy security, it’s good for middle class families and it will help create an economy built to last,”Reality is otherwise, says the New York Times:
What the government didn’t mention is that these improvements come at a high cost for drivers, automakers and society in general.…Some more details:
The new mileage rules are so expensive, in fact, that even if one factors in all the expected gains from the policy — like less damage from climate change and fewer deaths from respiratory disease — many economists think that the costs actually outweigh the benefits. [Emph. added]
According to the government’s analysis, the additional production and maintenance costs made necessary by the mileage rules will rise gradually to about $31.7 billion in 2025 — which will add about $1,900 to the average price of cars and light trucks. There are other costs, too. Some Americans will not be able to afford a new car. Profits of some automakers and dealers are likely to decline. Greater congestion will impose an added burden on health.Let that sink in a moment. The New York Times, a paper that liberals consider 'unbiased,' admits that "raising fuel-economy standards is more costly than climate change itself."
According to economists crunching the numbers, this makes mileage standards somewhere between 2.4 and 13 times more expensive than a gasoline tax as a tool to reduce our use of fuel. Indeed, by some calculations, raising fuel-economy standards is more costly than climate change itself. [Emph. added]
One of the studies supporting this article was written by the Congressional Budget Office and is available online (full text, PDF).
Hat tip: Greg Mankiw.