Sunday, November 16, 2003

No Home Runs in Energy Bill
The bill does not require improvements in the fuel efficiency of cars and trucks, the main guzzlers of gasoline made from imported oil. The current 27.5 miles per gallon average for cars could even decrease in the next decade because of several provisions in the bill, according to some analysts. Federal officials in the future would have to consider new factors, such as the impact on auto industry jobs, before demanding a higher performance standard, and the bill would extend a loophole that allows automakers credit for producing higher-mileage, ethanol-fueled hybrid cars even though those cars still overwhelmingly use gasoline.

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