New York Joins California in Tough Auto Emission Standards

Together, states account for 15% of national car sales.

Published: 20-Nov-2000

Tough new state auto exhaust limits will ultimately benefit the whole nation

By joining with California and adopting stricter limits on vehicle exhaust emissions, New York state is playing a key role in assuring cleaner air for all Americans in the future. That is a credit to Governor Pataki, who continues to build an impressive legacy as a steward of the environment. New York and California will now have tailpipe emission limits that are more stringent than federal regulations imposed on the rest of the country by the Environmental Protection Agency. But New York and California together account for 15 percent of the national automobile market, so Detroit and foreign manufacturers must take heed. No automaker can afford to forgo sales in these two large states simply to avoid the added cost of making cleaner vehicles. Instead, as a matter of efficiency, auto makers will likely make all of their vehicles meet the tougher emissions standards, regardless of where they are sold. In that sense, New York has done not only its residents a favor, but also the nation.

The health benefits would be significant. The new regulations would reduce the levels of both smog and particulate matter, which seeps into the lungs and damages tissue. The American Lung Association of Northeastern New York estimates that the lower smog limit alone would benefit many thousands in the Capital Region who suffer from respiratory ailments.

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