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Lawmakers Ask EPA to Pull Truck Rule


LINCOLN, Neb. (DTN) -- A group of 157 Republican senators and representatives asked U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan to withdraw a heavy-duty truck emissions rule that calls for electrification of the U.S. fleet, telling the administrator in a letter on Tuesday the rule will be costly to farmers.

The Biden administration rule announced in March 2024 tightens emission standards for heavy-duty vehicles sold in the years 2027 through 2032. The agency has said the rule is technology-neutral but essentially mandates the use of electric-vehicle technology, according to a lawsuit filed by attorneys general in 24 states in May 2024.

"This final rule, which encompasses heavy-duty vehicles ranging from delivery trucks and school buses to tractors and semis, would disrupt the heavy-duty truck industry by forcing the broad adoption of heavy-duty zero-emission vehicles on an extremely aggressive timeline, despite these vehicles currently being less than 1% of sales," the letter said.

The lawmakers pointed to a study that found the rule would cost nearly $1 trillion in infrastructure investment to "fully electrify the U.S. commercial fleet."

They said the cost for an electric semi-truck averages more than $400,000 while a comparable diesel Class 8 truck costs around $180,000.

"Our farmers and agricultural industry will be especially hurt by this new mandate," the letter said.

The lawmakers said there are about 3.2 million trucks including pickups operated on over 1.4 million farms and about 3.8 million tractors on over 1.5 million farms that would "see higher equipment costs and tighter margins due to this misguided rule."

The letter said the numbers do not account for the small, independent truckers, trucking companies and truck dealerships throughout the U.S. that will be affected.

"Not only would this rule harm consumers, but it would also exacerbate consolidation by effectively forcing our small trucking companies out of business that cannot afford this hasty transition to electric or hydrogen powered trucks," the lawmakers said.

"It is abundantly clear that the average American will be strapped with higher grocery prices and utility costs from this regulation. In the same report mentioned above, it estimated that utilities would need to invest $370 billion to upgrade their grid networks to meet the demands of just commercial vehicles -- this excludes estimates of how expensive it will be for the average American and utility company to meet the demands of your de facto EV mandate on light-duty, passenger vehicles."

Earlier this year a coalition of trucking industry interests, including the American Trucking Association, released a report that said it would cost nearly $1 trillion in infrastructure investment alone.

That includes about $620 billion in charging infrastructure but doesn't include actual costs for new semi-trucks. The industry report cites a new diesel Class 8 truck costs roughly $180,000 while a comparable electric-battery truck costs more than $400,000.

The lawmakers told Regan the rule will hit rural America particularly hard.

"This unaffordable and unachievable regulation will leave rural communities with grid capacity challenges and limited range versus comparable diesel vehicles," the letter said.

"When regulations are rushed and the impacts on the economy are not sufficiently considered, business closures and job losses will result. This de facto mandate does not consider the realities of the commercial zero-emission vehicle marketplace or consider the ability for small businesses in rural America to purchase and operate these vehicles."

Read the letter:…

Read more on DTN:

"New EPA Emissions Rule for Semi-Trucks,"…

"Ag Groups Disappointed in EV Mandate,"…

Todd Neeley can be reached at

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