America’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), are jointly proposing standards for medium and heavy-duty vehicles which would improve fuel efficiency and cut carbon pollution.

The proposed standards are expected to lower CO2 emissions by around 1bn metric tons, cut fuel costs by around US$170bn and reduce oil consumption by up to 1.8bn barrels during the lifetime of the vehicles sold though the programme.

These reductions are nearly equal to the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with energy use by all US residences in one year, with total oil savings greater than a year’s worth of American imports from the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) each year.

“Once upon-a-time, to be pro-environment you had to be anti-big-vehicles – this rule will change that,” said US Transportation Secretary, Anthony Foxx.

“In fact, these efficiency standards are good for the environment – and the economy. When trucks use less fuel, shipping costs go down. It’s good news all around, especially for anyone with an online shopping habit.”