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Ford, Volkswagen, BMW, Honda and Volvo urge court to affirm the EPA’s restoration of California’s waiver amid legal challenge

SACRAMENTO – Last week, five major automakers intervened in defense of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) decision to restore California’s waiver under the Clean Air Act for its greenhouse gas (GHG) and zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) standards. Ford, Volkswagen, BMW, Honda and Volvo filed a motion last Tuesday backing California’s waiver in response to lawsuits filed by Republican-led states, the oil industry, and other business interests against the EPA’s decision in March to restore California’s Clean Air Act waiver, remedying the previous administration’s groundless ​attack.

Last month, Governor Gavin Newsom, Attorney General Rob Bonta and the California Air Resources Board led a multistate coalition joining the U.S. EPA to defend the waiver from the new lawsuits. California’s standards, which 17 states have chosen to adopt, result in emissions reductions of hundreds of thousands of tons annually and are essential components of California’s and other states’ plans to fight climate change and protect public health.

“As these leaders of the auto industry recognize, tackling the existential climate crisis is essential to protecting our communities, environment, and economy alike,” said Governor Newsom. “Together with the federal government and our partners across the country, we will continue to defend our decades-old authority to protect Californians and our planet.”

In the face of the Trump Administration rollbacks, Ford, BMW, Honda, Volkswagen and Volvo signed on to groundbreaking California Framework Agreements in 2020 to forge a path forward for clean vehicle standards.

The automakers released the following statement last week: “As the five original California Framework companies, we stood with California in 2020 in support of the state’s ability to set stricter vehicle emissions standards. Today’s decision by Ford, Volkswagen Group, BMW Group, Honda, and Volvo to intervene in this suit reaffirms that commitment. We urge the Court to affirm the EPA’s Waiver Decision and allow California to protect people’s health and combat climate change by setting clean air standards. Doing so would move us closer to a zero-emission transportation future and make a positive contribution to the global regulatory framework.”

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