PG&E Testifies Against Trump's Rollback of Auto Emission Rules

(Bloomberg) -- California’s biggest electric utility wants the U.S. government to keep its current auto emission standards, which it says is critical to advance the adoption of electric cars.

PG&E Corp. plans to invest $360 million to support electric car charging infrastructure and “we want a stable environment for our investors and customers,” Anna Brooks, senior manager for local public affairs for the company, said Monday at a hearing in Fresno on a proposal by the Environmental Protection Agency and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

The federal agencies have proposed freezing fuel efficiency requirements for autos at 37 miles per gallon in 2020 instead of rising to 47 mpg by 2025 under Obama administration regulations. This would cap emission standards, too.

The rollback of environmental regulations is a priority of President Donald Trump who has expressed skepticism of climate change and has championed fossil fuel industries.

California Governor Jerry Brown is looking for electric utilities to become the future automotive fuel providers in the state as he seeks to get millions of electric cars on the road. For the utilities, ratepayer-funded charging stations represent their first big new revenue opportunity in decades.

“Transportation electrification is a key element of PG&E business strategy,” Brooks said.

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