The Corner

Re: He Who Pays the Piper

There are two other aspects to the new CAFE regulations announced today. The first is that they are predicated on EPA actually making an endangerment finding related to greenhouse gases. That finding is currently open to public comment, so the administration is being particularly brazen in revealing that the comment period is actually a sham and that its mind is made up. Secondly, downsizing of the American fleet has contributed to around 2,000 extra deaths on the road at current CAFE levels, because smaller cars are generally less crashworthy. The National Academy of Sciences confirmed this finding a few years back. Certainly, cars are becoming safer, but they would be safer still if they were allowed to be bigger and consumers given the choice between safety and fuel efficiency. Using the methodology of this CEI study from a few years back, applied to today’s fatality numbers in a back-of-the-envelope calculation, the new policy will lead to around 800 more needless deaths on the road each year. Blood for less oil, you could say.

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