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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release December 21, 2000


A year ago today, I announced the toughest air pollution standards for new cars and sport utility vehicles. Today, we take another bold step to clean our air. We are adopting strong new measures to dramatically reduce unhealthy and unsightly emissions from trucks and buses powered by diesel fuel. Together, these actions represent the most sweeping effort ever to protect our air and our health from the pollution caused by the vehicles we drive. They ensure that by the end of the decade, every new car, truck and SUV in America will be up to 95 percent cleaner than those on the road today.

Today's action by the Environmental Protection Agency mandates cleaner diesel fuel and extends the latest pollution control technology to all trucks and buses for the first time. These advances will prevent not only the thick plumes of diesel exhaust all too familiar to motorists, but also thousands of cases of respiratory illness and premature deaths. We will spare thousands of children and elderly the agony of asthma and bronchitis, and help to fulfill the promise of clean, healthy air for every American.

For the past eight years, Vice President Gore and I have been guided by the conviction that a strong economy and a healthy environment go hand in hand. Indeed, our nation entered the 21st century enjoying both unprecedented prosperity and the cleanest air and water in a generation. Our actions a year ago and today will help ensure an even safer and more prosperous future for generations yet to come.