Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 1:21 EDT

NRDC Report: Drivers To Save $68 Billion By 2030 Under 54.5 MPG Standard

April 19, 2012

NRDC Ranks Top 20 States for Most Consumer Benefits: TX, CA, FL, NY, NC, GA, VA, PA, TN, AZ, IL, OH, WA, MD, MI, NJ, AL, KY, MO, MN

WASHINGTON, April 19, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — Drivers will save $68 billion in fuel costs when the Obama administration’s 54.5 miles-per-gallon standard is fully implemented in 2030, according to a report released today by the Natural Resources Defense Council.

Drivers in Texas, California and Florida will save the most in 2030 according to “Relieving Pain at the Pump.”

But motorists everywhere right now can find relief from $4-a-gallon gas prices on the showroom floor. New 2012 models contain substantially more fuel-efficient choices as automakers begin to fulfill requirements under the administration’s original 2009 clean cars agreement to raise standards to 35.5 mpg by 2016.

“Drivers today have twice the fuel-efficient car options than just three years ago. The technology -and fuel savings– are only going to improve thanks to even stronger efficiency standards,” said Luke Tonachel, senior vehicles analyst at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “As consumers look to trade in older cars over time, they will have the latest in fuel saving technology available to them, putting money back in their pockets.”

The 54.5 mpg by 2025 standard, set to be finalized in August, will double today’s average level of fuel efficiency. This will save individual drivers $4400 over the life of the vehicle, after considering the cost of the fuel saving technologies. NRDC quantified savings in all states in 2030, giving the more efficient vehicles a chance to penetrate the roadways.

The top 20 states where drivers would save the most from the 54.5 mpg fuel efficiency standards are listed at the bottom of this release.

The NRDC analysis also found there are 47 fuel-efficient models available in showrooms today, rising from 27 models in 2009. Automakers have introduced a plethora of fuel-saving features in some of the more popular, conventional gas-powered cars as a result of the 35.5 mpg standard. This gives consumers fuel-saving vehicle options in addition to buying a hybrid or electric vehicle.

“This study should put to rest any notion that drivers have to sacrifice anything to get more miles to the gallon,” said Alan Baum, principle with Baum and Associates who contributed to the analysis. “From pickups to SUVs to minivans to cars, automakers are squeezing more out of vehicles with conventional gasoline engines than ever before. The internal combustion engine is far from dead; it’s just going through a major makeover. “

The report can be found online here: http://www.nrdc.org/energy/relievingpainatthepump.asp. Luke has more details about the report in his blog here: http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/ltonachel/.

The top 20 states where drivers would save the most from the 54.5 mpg fuel efficiency standards are:

    1) Texas:                                  $7.750 billion
    2) California:                             $7.270 billion
    3) Florida:                                $6.683 billion
    4) New York:                               $2.959 billion
    5) North Carolina:                         $2.797 billion
    6) Georgia:                                $2.564 billion
    7) Virginia:                               $2.179 billion
    8) Pennsylvania:                           $2.004 billion
    9) Tennessee:                              $1.958 billion
    10) Arizona:                               $1.887 billion
    11) Illinois:                              $1.853 billion
    12) Ohio:                                  $1.664 billion
    13) Washington:                            $1.547 billion
    14) Maryland:                              $1.529 billion
    15) Michigan:                              $1.520 billion
    16) New Jersey:                            $1.452 billion
    17) Alabama:                               $1.271 billion
    18) Kentucky:                              $1.207 billion
    19) Missouri:                              $1.207 billion
    20) Minnesota:                             $1.162 billion

These state rankings are a net savings, reflecting the actual fuel savings at the pump and the incremental costs associated with fuel-saving technologies in the new vehicles, according to the report.

A streaming audio replay of this news event will be available on the Web as of 5 p.m. EDT at http://www.nrdc.org.

The Natural Resources Defense Council is a national, nonprofit organization of scientists, lawyers and environmental specialists dedicated to protecting public health and the environment. Founded in 1970, NRDC has 1.3 million members and online activists, served from offices in New York, Washington, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco and Beijing. More information on NRDC is available at its Web site: www.nrdc.org.

SOURCE Natural Resources Defense Council, Washington, DC

Source: PR Newswire