Trump’s proposal would freeze the targets by 2020
Photo: Scott Olsen (Getty)

More Americans are in favor of strengthening U.S. fuel economy standards, a new study says, as President Donald Trump moves to ease the requirements for automakers.

The study from Autolist.com surveyed the views of 1,132 current car shoppers after Trump proposed freezing federal fuel economy standards for new light vehicles at 2020 model year levels, according to Automotive News, far short of levels set by his former President Barack Obama.

From Automotive News:

Autolist, which surveyed 1,132 current car shoppers after the administration’s proposal was announced, found that 41 percent of respondents disagree with the proposal — while 30 percent are on the fence.

The Trump administration this month formally proposed freezing federal fuel economy standards for new light vehicles at 2020 model year levels, rather than pushing for incremental improvements through the 2025 model year as required under the Obama-era plan in effect. The new proposal would also rescind California’s ability to establish stricter emissions standards than the federal government.

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The Autolist study—which you can check out in full here—found that half of respondents also agree with keeping California’s authority in place to establish even stricter standards, something Trump’s administration is seeking to revoke.

If the study’s any indication, Trump’s battle to ease fuel economy standards could be much harder than his administration may think. If it passes, the proposal would overturn Obama’s standards, considered one of his chief accomplishments to combat climate change, by requiring automakers to hit a fleetwide average of 50 mpg by 2025.