- The CAFE program has contributed to increased fuel economy
of the nation’s light-duty vehicle fleet during the
past 22 years.
- The CAFE system, or any alternative regulatory system,
should include broad trading of fuel economy “credits.
- Certain aspects of the CAFE program have not functioned as intended:
- The car/truck distinction has been
stretched beyond the original purpose.
- No evidence that the "2-fleet rule" distinguishing
between domestic and foreign has had any perceptible
effect on total employment in the U.S. automotive industry.
- Consideration should be given to designing and evaluating an approach with fuel economy targets that are dependent on vehicle attributes, such as vehicle weight, that influence fuel use
- Technologies exist that, if applied to the light-duty fleet
(passenger cars and light-trucks), would significantly reduce
fuel consumption within 15 years.
- Under any system of fuel economy targets, the “2-fleet
rule” for domestic and foreign content should be eliminated.
to Congress on “Effects of the Alternative Motor Fuels Act
CAFE Incentives Policy
This document provides an overview of the Corporate
Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) incentives policy to encourage the
production of alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) and the impact
it has had on the availability of AFVs, petroleum use and greenhouse
gas emissions in the United States. The report was prepared
in consultation with the Department of Energy and the Environmental
Summary Highlights follow:
- The Alternative Motor Fuels Act of 1988 (AMFA, Pub. L.
100 94, October 14, 1988) provides CAFE incentives for the
manufacture of vehicles that use ethanol, methanol, or natural
gas fuels, either exclusively or as an alternate fuel in
conjunction with gasoline or diesel fuel. The primary purpose
of AMFA is to encourage the widespread use of these fuels
and to promote the production of alternative fuel vehicles
- Manufacturers producing alternative fuel vehicles that
meet specific energy efficiency and minimum driving range
requirements are able to gain CAFE credits by manufacturing
these vehicles. This helps manufacturers raise their overall
fleet fuel economy levels in their efforts to comply with
the CAFE standards. The maximum allowable increase in CAFE
from MY 1993 B 2004 is 1.2 mpg per manufacturer.
- The AMFA CAFE credit program has been successful in stimulating
a significant increase in the availability of alternative
fuel vehicles (mostly ethanol E85 flexible-fuel vehicles).
Because manufacturers had to overcome technological challenges,
nearly the entire increase has been in the past three years.