Court Orders DOE to Resolve EPACT Status
A federal court ordered the Department of Energy (DOE) to resolve the status of Energy Policy Act (EPACT) mandates for private and municipal fleets. The court ordered the DOE to publish a proposed rule by the end of January 2003, with the final rule to come by the end of November 2003.
The DOE rulemaking will address three issues. First, whether the EPACT goal of reducing petro-leum usage by 30 percent by 2010 is feasible or whether the goal should be revised. Second, whether a private/municipal mandate is needed to meet the goal. And third, whether the goal will actually be met if the mandate is enforced.
EPACT, which was signed into law on Oct. 24, 1992, is aimed at reducing U.S. dependence on foreign oil. The original legislation did not impose any statutory mandates on private or municipal fleets, but did provide for two separate rulemaking procedures whereby the DOE could impose alter-native-fuel vehicle (AFV) purchase mandates if alternative fuel-use was not expected to meet certain goals, including the 30 percent usage goal by 2010.