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Re: Four Wheel Drive SUV Popularity

I'll also preface my comments with the disclaimer that these are my opinions, 
not necessarily my employer's.

Rodney Sobin's message was an excellent summary of some of the subsidies that 
automobiles receive, artificially (in economic terms) making it easier to drive 
a gas guzzler.  One minor update, the maximum permissible mass transit rebate 
is now $60/month, at least in this area.  Since free parking could easily be 
valued at 3 to 4 times that in the area, it's still inequitable.

But the real reason I'm interjecting my thoughts into this conversation is to 
note how odd it is that none of you have mentioned why SUV's are able to escape 
federally mandated fuel economy standards.  They're not cars, they're trucks, 
under a ruling that I've never understood.  (If it walks like a duck, talks 
like a duck, etc.).  If we would subject trucks to the same fuel economy 
standards as passenger vehicles, the problem would eventually resolve itself, 
probably by SUV's disappearance.  Some of you probably know whether it would 
take Congressional action to do this, or if it is in some government agency's 
power -- I don't, but would like to learn.

Bill Wilson, EPA Region 9 Pollution Prevention Coordinator
75 Hawthorne Street, San Francisco CA 94105
phone 415.744.2192 fax 415.744.1796 email wilson.bill@epamail.epa.gov