U.S. to set 24 percent emission cut for heavy trucks

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U.S. regulators on Friday proposed a 24 percent improvement in fuel efficiency for heavy trucks by 2027 as part of the Obama administration's plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The Environmental Protection Agency said the new standards for truck tractors would reduce carbon emissions by a total of 1.1 billion tons (1 billion metric tons) and begin with model year 2021. The regulators also proposed efficiency standards for trailers.

If adopted by the federal government next year, the regulations would spur technological innovation in the trucking industry, create jobs and lead to a new generation of cleaner, fuel-efficient commercial trucks, officials said.

Full details of the proposals were not immediately available. A source familiar with the matter said a lower efficiency goal of 16 percent was expected for recreational vehicles and pickup trucks.

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U.S. to set 24 percent emission cut for heavy trucks
Members of security stand outside of the Supreme Court in Washington, Monday June 29, 2015. The Supreme Court is meeting for the final time until the fall to decide three remaining cases and add some new ones for the term that starts in October. The three remaining cases that are expected to be decided Monday raise important questions about a controversial drug that was implicated in botched executions, state efforts to reduce partisan influence in congressional redistricting and costly Environmental Protection Agency limits on the emission of mercury and other toxic pollutants from power plants. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
Trucks head eastbound on Rt 50 in Bowie, Md., Friday, June 19, 2015. The Obama administration on Friday proposed tougher mileage standards for medium and heavy-duty trucks, the latest move by President Barack Obama in his second-term drive to reduce pollution blamed for global warming. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - JUNE 10: A United Airlines plane sits on the tarmac at San Francisco International Airport on June 10, 2015 in San Francisco, California. The Environmental Protection Agency is taking the first steps to start the process of regulating greenhouse gas emissions from airplane exhaust. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
In this photo taken Feb. 9, 2015, President Barack Obama listens in the East Room of the White House in Washington. The president is setting a goal of raising $2 billion from the private sector for investments in clean energy. The White House says it's launching a Clean Energy Investment Initiative as part of the Obama administration's effort to address climate change.The Energy Department will solicit investments from philanthropists and investors concerned about climate change. The aim is to spur development of technologies and energy sources that are low in carbon dioxide pollution, such as solar panels, wind power, fuel cells and advanced batteries. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Trucks head eastbound on Rt 50 in Bowie, Md., Friday, June 19, 2015. The Obama administration on Friday proposed tougher mileage standards for medium and heavy-duty trucks, the latest move by President Barack Obama in his second-term drive to reduce pollution blamed for global warming. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
A truck heads eastbound on Rt 50 in Bowie, Md., Friday, June 19, 2015. The Obama administration on Friday proposed tougher mileage standards for medium and heavy-duty trucks, the latest move by President Barack Obama in his second-term drive to reduce pollution blamed for global warming. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
JOLIET, IL - MAY 07: Traffic backs up at an intersecton in front of NRG Energy's Joliet Station power plant on May 7, 2015 in Joliet, Illinois. According to scientists, global carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations have reached a new monthly record of 400 parts per million, levels that haven't been seen for about two million years. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports the combustion of fossil fuels to generate electricity is the largest single source of CO2 emissions in the United States, followed by the burning of fossil fuels for transportation. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
JOLIET, IL - MAY 07: An American flag hangs in front of NRG Energy's Joliet Station power plant on May 7, 2015 in Joliet, Illinois. According to scientists, global carbon dioxide (CO2) concentrations have reached a new monthly record of 400 parts per million, levels that haven't been seen for about two million years. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reports the combustion of fossil fuels to generate electricity is the largest single source of CO2 emissions in the United States, followed by the burning of fossil fuels for transportation. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
California Gov. Jerry Brown speaks at the podium as Christiana Figueres, far left, executive secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, listens at a news conference at the natural History Museum of Los Angeles County in Los Angeles Monday, June 15, 2015. Brown says he wants California's plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to be a model when global leaders meet to try and fashion a universal agreement to combat climate change. Brown also met with Figueres and leading scientists to discuss the impacts of global warming and the need for action at all levels of government.(AP Photo/Matt Hartman)
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New efficiency standards would have a direct bearing on companies involved in truck manufacturing, including Cummins Inc (CMI.N), Eaton Corp (ETN.N), Daimler AG (DAIGn.DE) and Volvo AB (VOLVb.ST).

The standards are the latest rule by the Obama administration aimed at slashing greenhouse gas emissions from the country's biggest emitting sectors.

Transportation-related greenhouse gases are the second-largest source of emissions after power plants. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is expected to finalize sweeping greenhouse gas standards for power plants in August.

(Additional reporting by Valerie Volcovici; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)

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