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Local Trucking Company reacts to Obama's Fuel Efficiency Plan - KOAM TV 7

Local Trucking Company reacts to Obama's Fuel Efficiency Plan

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President Obama announced that he wants new fuel economy standards in trucks. But a lot of drivers and companies here in the four states say that's easier said than done.

President Obama is ordering a new round of fuel efficiency standards for medium and heavy-duty vehicles.  He is highlighting improvements already undertaken by companies such as safeway to cut back on gasoline costs for their fleet of trucks. He said  that fuel savings by truck fleets carrying consumer goods would result in savings to consumers.

The tougher fuel-efficiency standards won't be fully released for a few years, but when the time comes, some truckers in the four-states say it's going to cost them.

"Unless you buy a truck that's already equipped to do that...for myself, it would be too expensive." says Troy Corwin, a local truck driver.

"The costs of trucks are going sky high, the cost of fuel is going sky high and unfortunately if we can't figure this out as a country and as an industry to reduce fuel cost, it's going to mean that we'll all be paying more at the supermarket for our food." says Bert Johnson, Vice President of Human Resources for Con-way Truckload in Joplin.

Con-way Truckload in Joplin is already rigged with low-emissions equipment, but say changes could actually improve machinery functions.

"The emissions controls that we've had in place now for the last several years, the manufacturers haven't got it quite right. We often times run into problems with our equipment not being able to run due to some of these emissions controls." Johnson says.

The new rules would affect trucks from the 2014 to 2018 model years, and for drivers like Troy and Carla Corwin, who drive older model trucks, the upgrades could be costly.

"It would be kind of expensive to equip my truck to go green. It's already diesel fuel, it runs on DEF, the blue def, which is suppose to cut down on emissions, so that's something that would be kind of costly to me." Corwin says.

The Obama Administration says the new standards will be released by March of 2016.

The American Trucking Association supports president's plan to go green, but also believes new rules shouldn't force specific technologies onto the market before they're fully tested.

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