General Motors’ Massive “COP” Out

Chevy’s 2020 Tahoe       Photo: Paul Sancya, AP

On Tuesday, while governments struggled mightily to deal with the climate emergency at the UN Climate Meeting and U.S. stakeholders tried to make lemonade out of the U.S. pullout of the Paris Accord by proclaiming that U.S. Governors, Mayors, and major corporations are “Still In,” back in Detroit, General Motors threw their company in reverse by rolling out their largest SUV ever — adding 7 full inches to the Tahoe truck.  General Motors says that they will sell 20 fully electric vehicles globally by 2023, but its true colors were revealed recently when it sided with the Trump administration and against California over the “clean car” emissions and fuel economy standards.

Why This Matters:  Transportation accounts for 23% of carbon emissions globally according to the IPCC.  As long as gas is cheap, car companies will keep making gas guzzlers and the public will keep buying them.  But the bill is going to come due in a decade or two — indeed it already is — and we are just paying the cost in disaster aid. Leadership matters.  GM is not leading and neither is our government.  They claim that these new longer and heavier trucks will actually have improved gas mileage above the current dismal 15 mpg in the city, but they won’t say how much.  We are not buying it. We are wondering why the government bailed GM out a decade ago —  GM continues to “cost” the government and the public dearly by expanding its line of carbon-emitting gas guzzlers.

How Much Bigger?

The new trucks are significantly bigger.  According to the Associated Press,

  • the Tahoe will grow nearly 7 inches to almost 211 inches
  • the Suburban lengthens by more than an inch to nearly 226 inches
  • the trucks’ many new features will add 50 to 200 pounds (23 to 91 kilos), depending on options, to the SUVs

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