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E-M:/ Canada, Automakers Announce Breakthrough Global Warming Agreement



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Enviro-Mich message from "Anne Woiwode" <anne.woiwode@sierraclub.org>
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: March 5, 2005
CONTACT: Brian O'Malley, 202-675-6279


     Canada, Automakers Announce Breakthrough Global Warming Agreement
Automakers To Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions By Million of Tons Beginning
                                   2007


WINDSOR, ONTARIO - Today, the Canadian government and automobile
manufacturers signed a historic agreement to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions from automobiles by over 15 million tons by the end of 2010.*
If implemented correctly, this reduction will be consistent with the first
phase of the California  Clean Car Law (known as the Pavley Law).  This
improvement will be made by using existing, cost effective technologies -
like more efficient engines, smarter transmissions, and better
aerodynamics.

"This agreement is a breakthrough because it will both cut global warming
emissions in Canada, and set the stage for similar reductions in the United
States, " said Dan Becker, Washington Director of the Sierra Club's Global
Warming Program.

Right now, California and seven eastern states either have, or are in the
process of adopting clean car laws.  With the addition of Canada, one-third
of the North American auto market will have to meet California's tougher
emissions rules.

"The automakers will find it financially impossible to make one clean set
of cars for eight states and Canada and a dirty set for the rest,"
continued Becker.  "Eight plus one equals 50."

To ensure that the auto companies comply with their commitment, the
Canadian government is setting milestones, and will step in with a
regulatory backstop if the automakers fail to live up to their promise.

With this agreement, the automakers unilaterally disarm from their
long-standing position that they cannot make clean cars.  In fact, they
have sued to overturn the California Clean Car Law which is the basis for
Canada's action.  The auto companies are now in the awkward position of
telling a judge that they cannot make the same cars in California that they
will make in Canada.

"When it comes to dealing with automobile manufacturers, Canada is leading
way," continued Becker.  "Canada told automobile manufacturers what they
needed to protect the health their citizens and environment, and said that
they would not take no for an answer."

Automakers have long claimed they cannot cut global warming emissions - and
won't.  Now they are promising Canada that they will.  The automakers have
now lost their last excuse for inaction.  It is time for the automakers to
bring the benefits of clean cars to Americans, and do in the U.S. what they
have promised to do abroad.

"We look forward to examining the fine print of the agreement," continued
Becker.

* The agreement would reduce greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles by
10 million tons between 2007 and 2010 and 5.3 million tons in 2010.

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