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CAr pollution



On April 12, 2023, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed a new plan to reduce harmful tailpipe pollution from passenger cars and light trucks starting with model year 2027. 

The EPA’s current proposal is a good start, but it must be even stronger to curb pollution and improve public health. Within the proposal, the EPA has said it will consider more stringent alternatives. Health professionals must ask the EPA to finalize air pollution safeguards on passenger cars and light trucks that are at least as strong as Alternative 1 in its proposal.  The EPA is accepting comments until July 5.

What can you ask for?

Ask the EPA to finalize air pollution safeguards on cars and light trucks that are at least as strong as Alternative 1 in its proposal.

  • For the U.S. to meet its Paris Climate Agreement goals we need the strongest possible long-term pollution safeguards that will reduce car and light truck greenhouse gas emissions 75% by 2030, putting the country on a path to a 100% zero-emission new vehicle sales target by 2035.

  • According to the EPA’s analysis, the transportation sector accounts for 27% of greenhouse gas emissions and is the fastest-growing emitter of greenhouse gases.


Ask the EPA to move quickly and finalize these new safeguards by the end of the year!  

  • The American Lung Association’s report “Zeroing in on Healthy Air” found that a nationwide transition to zero-emission cars, light trucks, and heavy-duty vehicles –coupled with a transition to zero-emission electricity – would result in:
    o 110,000 premature deaths prevented (nationwide, 2020-2050)
    o $1.2 trillion in health benefits (nationwide, 2020-2050)
    o $1.7 trillion in additional climate benefits (global, 2020-2050)

Ask the EPA to set the strongest possible air pollution safeguards on cars and light truck emissions to protect those most vulnerable, including communities of color.

  • Low-wealth and BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) communities experience disproportionate harm from dirty vehicle pollution, leading to increased rates of asthma and other respiratory illnesses. 

  • Low-wealth and BIPOC communities are often closest to highways and bear the greatest burden from vehicle pollution.


Take Action

The EPA's process for submitting public comments can be difficult to navigate, so we created a tool that is completely editable for you to make your voice heard! We encourage you to add your story or make edits to the message body because personal comments are the most impactful. If you do not see a prompt to compose your message below, you may need to disable pop-up blockers on your browser to take action.


What types of pollution do cars and light trucks emit?

What are the health effects of exposure to pollution from car and light truck emissions?

  • Exposure to air pollution can lead to health problems, including increased risk of asthma attacks, strokes, heart attacks, cancer and premature deaths. 

How is climate change related to pollution from cars and light trucks?

Will enacting strong pollution limits on car and light truck emissions hurt the economy, auto workers, or manufacturers?​​


How will the rule work?

  • The EPA will not be requiring a transition to EVs per se. The EPA looks at available emissions reduction technologies and has leading experts determine both their logistical feasibility and economic impact. It then creates pollution limits for a given industry/source according to what is achievable through the best available and economically feasible technology, in this case, the best available technology being a transition to electric vehicles. The EPA is required to determine and show that any rule can be met with existing technology, and is required to get that rule past a currently skeptical supreme court. 

  • The rule will ONLY apply to new car sales and will impose no restrictions or requirements on the cars people have now. Furthermore, the pollution limits are manufacturer-wide. Even in the most aggressive proposed rule consumers will have the option of buying gas vehicles. 

Is meeting this rule logistically feasible and economically beneficial? 

What effect will proposed alternative 1 have on the transition to EVs and what overall technology mix is likely to be used to meet the rule?

  • Per the EPA, Depending on the compliance pathways manufacturers select to meet the standards, EPA projects that EVs could account for 67% of new light-duty vehicle sales and 46% of new medium-duty vehicle sales in 2032. 

    • This compares to projections that even without this rule, half of the light-duty vehicle sales will be electric by 2030.

  • Per the EPA, The proposed standards are performance-based, allowing each automaker to choose what set of emissions control technologies is best suited for their vehicle fleet to meet the standards. EPA projects that one potential pathway for the industry to meet the proposed standards would be through: 

    • 67 percent BEV penetration in MY 2032 across the combined light-duty passenger car, crossover/SUV, and pickup truck categories 

    • About 40 percent BEV penetration by 2032 across the combined medium-duty van and pickup truck categories 

    • Wide-spread use of gasoline particulate filters to reduce PM emissions 

    • Improvements in technology to reduce CO2 from conventional gasoline vehicles 

    • Manufacturers may also choose to employ hybrid or plug-in hybrid technologies to help meet the proposed standards. 


I have additional questions, who can I talk to?

Check out this great video from our partners in Minnesota, the Health Professionals for a Healthy Climate 

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