Statement by The Nature Conservancy Concerning the Trump Administration's Decision on Automobile Emission Standards

Washington, DC | April 02, 2018

The Nature Conservancy opposes the decision by the Trump Administration to roll back greenhouse gas emission standards for new light duty vehicles, as it undermines the basic safeguards that protect our air, land and water from pollution and needlessly sets the nation back in efforts to address climate change. The Conservancy is particularly concerned that statements by the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Administrator indicate that California’s waiver may be eliminated.

Our nation’s tailpipe emission standards are one of the great environmental success stories. The tailpipe standards the EPA is proposing to modify reduce the pollutants that cause global warming, improve the quality of the air Americans breathe every day, and increase the fuel efficiency of our vehicles. Better fuel efficiency means consumers go farther on a tank of gas, which can save Americans hundreds of dollars a year.

“The California Clean Air waiver works, plain and simple. Our skies are no longer choked with smog, we’re driving innovation in clean energy and clean cars, and our economy is booming,” said Mike Sweeney, Executive Director, The Nature Conservancy’s California Chapter. “This is an epic battle for our future and Californians must defend efforts to ensure clean air for our residents.”

“EPA’s decision comes at a time when the transportation sector is emerging as the United States’ largest source of global warming emissions. Many U.S. automakers are already shifting their operations towards building more zero-emitting electric vehicles, and states are increasing their commitment to the infrastructure that supports them. EPA’s decision is out-of-step with these trends and what the global marketplace demands,” says Lynn Scarlett, The Nature Conservancy’s Co-Chief of External Affairs. “Tailpipe emission standards have long been a force to spur innovation. We urge the Administration not to undermine the effectiveness of the critical standards that help drive new technologies to meet the challenges before us, including the California waiver.”

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 72 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

Contact information

Liz Georges


Stay Updated

Learn about the places you love and find out how you can help by signing up for Nature eNews.

I'm already on the list Read our privacy policy

Thank you for joining our online community!

We'll be in touch soon with more Nature Conservancy news, updates, and exciting stories.