WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Deb Fischer (R-Neb.) today led 33 of her Senate colleagues in introducing legislation to overturn an excessive Biden Administration regulation on heavy-duty vehicle emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) latest rule would be challenging to implement and make new, compliant trucks cost prohibitive for small business owners.
“The Biden Administration is saddling the trucking industry with an onerous regulation that would jack up vehicle costs and hurt good paying jobs. This aggressive EPA rule – which will hit mom and pop truck operations the hardest – is also ineffective because it incentivizes operators to keep using older, higher-emitting trucks for longer. During a period of high inflation and supply chain disruptions, the last thing this country needs is more expensive freight costs and fewer truckers. I am proud to be leading a large coalition of my colleagues to push back against the Biden Administration’s obsession with excessive climate regulations,” said Sen. Fischer.
“Here we go again. The new EPA heavy-duty vehicle emissions rule again demonstrates the Biden administration’s complete willingness to bring the heavy hand of government down on industry, in this case on the trucking industry that keeps our economy moving. What’s even scarier than imposing new rules on everything from heavy-duty pickups to semis is the fact the EPA is already working on more restrictive rules. I fully support Senator Fischer’s fight to stop this gross government overreach,” said Sen. Hyde-Smith.
“It is time to get government out of the way of hardworking Americans and job creators. The EPA’s woke new rule will only hurt the folks who run small businesses when they are forced into buying the newest and highly expensive ‘green’ trucks. This is a classic example of gross government overreach, and I am proud to stand with my colleagues to stop this unnecessary and harmful rule,” said Sen. Rick Scott.
“In Kansas, the trucking industry is made up of small businesses, and 98% of all trucking companies operate 25 or fewer trucks. Under this new rule, these small businesses will take the hardest hit from this rule that requires them to spend as much as $8,304 increase per vehicle to be in compliance. This is yet another inflationary policy from the Biden administration that our economy does not need,” said Sen. Marshall.
“When you increase the cost of a new heavy-duty truck, you end up increasing the prices that people in Wyoming pay for essential goods. This overly burdensome rule from the EPA would cause incredible harm to not only the trucking industry, but our supply chain. Amidst record inflation, the Biden administration should be focused on implementing policies that help reduce costs for the American people instead of pushing Green New Deal priorities,” said Sen. Lummis.
“Over 24,000 Oklahomans are heavy and tractor-trailer truck drivers. This new rule will burden their livelihoods, increasing costs for the trucking industry and, in turn, increasing costs for consumers in communities who rely exclusively on trucking to deliver their freight. I stand with my colleagues in opposing this rule and pushing back against the heavy hand of the EPA,” said Sen. Mullin.
“The EPA’s new overreaching emissions rule will further strain the supply chain and put critical trucking jobs throughout Montana in jeopardy. I’m joining my colleagues in pushing back on President Biden’s woke, green army of unelected Washington bureaucrats taking aim at our Montana way of life with more ridiculous regulatory nonsense,” said Sen. Daines.
“The Biden administration’s newest target in their green energy crusade is America’s heavy duty trucks, which transport everything from manufacturing components to groceries. The EPA’s NOx emissions standards will cause vehicle prices to soar, and ultimately, consumers in Idaho and across the country will bear the burdens of these costs at a time when families are already struggling to make ends meet. This Congressional Review Act sends a message to the Biden administration that its egregious green energy policy will hurt consumers, small business owners, and our still-fragile supply chain. If this CRA succeeds, Congress can stop this rule before it causes too much damage,” said Sen. Risch.
"Biden is at war against truck drivers so he can please his Green New Deal supporters. The EPA's new demands will result in higher costs for drivers, higher prices for goods, and will crush smaller trucking companies by forcing them to again buy all-new equipment. The past few years demonstrated just how important truckers are to the supply chain. It's now more important than ever to keep our economy moving. Supporting truckers and our supply chain is how we get back to made in America," said Sen. Lankford.
“At a time of record-high inflation, Americans cannot afford more burdensome regulations from the Biden administration, particularly rules that target our already constrained supply chain. By increasing costs on the trucking industry, this EPA rule would actually make it harder to replace older trucks with newer models that have reduced emissions. Our resolution would repeal this misguided regulation, protecting our nation’s supply chain and U.S. consumers from even higher costs,” said Sen. Hoeven.
“I’m proud to join my colleagues in standing up to the EPA for imposing yet another onerous requirement on truckers, which would increase the price of goods at a time when inflation is already hitting American consumers in their pocketbooks,” said Sen. Thune.
“Once again Joe Biden’s administration is proving they don’t care who gets hurt in their quest for so-called “climate justice. We’ve already made significant progress over the past few decades in reducing heavy vehicle emission, but the administration insists on imposing additional rules to achieve unrealistic reductions at a massive cost to small business owners. This overreaching, inflexible rule is costly and impractical. Our bill protects hardworking truck drivers, manufacturers, and dealers, including those in North Dakota, by rejecting these burdensome regulations,” said Sen. Cramer.
“Since President Biden has been in office, his administration has made rash decisions that hurt our economy time and time again. At a time when our nation is faced with supply chain shortages and record inflation, American businesses should not have to battle the heavy hand of government. We should be working on policies to help our producers and consumers, not hurt them. It is crucial the Biden administration’s ruling is reversed to ease the burden on trucking businesses and consumers alike,” said Sen. Rounds.
“I spent 39 years building a trucking and logistics company out of my hometown of Jasper, Indiana, so I know firsthand the impact this heavy-handed EPA rule would have. Truckers keep our country moving, so I’m proud to join my colleagues and put a stop to this bureaucratic overreach,” said Sen. Braun.
“The prior years of over-ambitious emission standards have already created unreliable equipment for many years and even driven one of the primary engine manufacturers out of the on-road industry. These ongoing emission systems failures are devastating,” said Danny Schnautz, President of Clark Freight Lines (Pasadena, Texas).
“If small business truckers can’t afford the new, compliant trucks, they’re going to stay with older, less efficient trucks, or leave the industry entirely. Once again, EPA has largely ignored the warnings and concerns raised by truckers in this latest rule,” said Todd Spencer, President of the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA).
Full text of the resolution can be found here.
In addition to Sen. Fischer, the resolution was cosponsored by Sens. Roger Marshall, M.D. (R-Kan.), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Ted Budd (R-N.C.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), John Thune (R-S.D.), Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Eric Schmitt (R-Mo.), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), John Kennedy (R-La.), Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), Todd Young (R-Ind.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Katie Britt (R-Ala.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), and Josh Hawley (R-Mo.).
The EPA finalized its rule on new emission standards for heavy duty vehicles on December 20, 2022. The rule would go into effect on March 27, 2023.
The rule’s new standards cover nitrogen oxides (NOx) and other air pollutants including particulate matter (PM), hydrocarbons, and carbon monoxide (CO). The rule would also change requirements regarding emission control systems and emission-related warranties.
The EPA estimated the technology required to meet the new rule’s standards will cost between $2,568 and $8,304 per vehicle.
Existing regulations on trucks have already resulted in a decrease in NOx emissions between 98% and 99% compared to models from the late 1990s.