President Obama just announced new fuel efficiency standards of 54.5 mpg for cars and light trucks by 2025. Currently, cars and trucks on the road average 27 miles per gallon.
This new standard will dramatically cut the oil we consume, saving a total of 12 billion barrels of oil, and by 2025 reduce oil consumption by 2.2 million barrels a day - as much as half of the oil we import from OPEC every day.
Increasing fuel efficiency not only saves money at the pump, but has numerous environmental benefits as well. Decreasing our dependency on oil reduces the extracting of one our vital natural resources. As we learn to transition to alternatives to petroleum, our consumption (and disposal) of petroleum based products such as plastic, expanded polystyrene (Styrofoam), and other problem products that take up a large part of our landfills, will decrease.
The PEW Clean Energy Program is just one of many groups dedicated to raising awareness about fuel efficiency in the United States. According to Phyllis Cuttino, director of the Pew Clean Energy Program:
This proposed rule will give Americans what they want. It will reduce our dependence on foreign oil, save consumers money at the pump, spur technological innovation, create jobs in the automobile industry and reduce harmful pollution.