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The Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming addressed our nation's energy, economic and national security challenges during the 110th and 111th Congresses.

This is an archived version of the committee's website, where the public, students and the media can continue to access and learn from our work.

Markey hails final passage of cash for clunkers program

Success Shows Democratic Congress’ Clean Energy Plan is Working

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representative Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), one of the authors of the Cash for Clunkers program, today hailed the Senate passage of a bill to extend the highly successful program with an additional $2 billion in funding. In the House, Rep. Markey also pushed to ensure that the money to fund the extension, which will be used from a clean energy fund from the Recovery Act, would be replenished to further America’s clean energy goals. The bill now heads to the President’s desk, where it is expected to be signed quickly.

Below is the statement of Rep. Markey, Chairman of the Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming and the House Energy and Commerce Energy and Environment subcommittee:

“This wildly successful program has already proven to be a win for the economy, a win for energy independence and an overwhelming win for consumers,” said Markey. “The success of Cash for Clunkers shows the Democrats clean energy plan accomplishes the goals it set out to do -- stimulating the economy, increasing our energy independence and helping to preserve our planet.”

According to reports on the more than 200,000 Cash for Clunkers purchases thus far:

  • The average fuel economy of new vehicles purchased under the program is 25.4 mpg, and the average fuel economy of trade-ins is 15.8 mpg. The average increase in fuel economy is 9.6 MPG, or a 61% improvement. This will result in annual consumer savings of $700-$1000 in gas prices.
  • 83% of trade-ins under the program are trucks, and 59% of new vehicle purchases are cars. Cars purchased under the program are, on average, 21% above the average fuel economy of all new cars currently available, and 63% above the average fuel economy of cars that were traded in.
  • In July, Ford’s hybrid vehicles (Fusion, Milan, Escape and Mariner) posted combined sales of 5,353, a record for any month and up 323% versus a year ago.
  • During the week that the ‘Cash for Clunkers’ program was launched, GM’s small car sales increased 54.8% over the preceding week.  GM Compact car sales were up 36.9% during the same period.  Specifically, the Chevy Aveo – one of GM’s most fuel-efficient vehicles at 30 mpg (EPA) – saw a sales increase of 58.9% during the week that the CARS program was launched.

The economic up-side doesn’t end in the auto industry:

  • Companies that produce sodium silicate, the substance used to ‘kill’ the clunkers, are experiencing record sales.
  • Sirius XM stock value has experienced a surge because its units are getting installed in the new vehicles
  • Some economists see more major impacts: "The blowout response to the cash-for-clunkers incentive program has been far stronger than we expected," wrote Morgan Stanley economist Richard Berner in a note Monday. He now thinks GDP will grow 3% to 4%, up from his firm's earlier forecast of 1%.”
  • Steel demand is beginning to pick up again after eight months and should benefit from the "Cash for Clunkers" auto rebate program, the chief executive of steelmaker Nucor Corp (NUE.N) said on Wednesday.

PLEASE NOTE: The House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming was created to explore American clean energy solutions that end our reliance on foreign oil and reduce carbon pollution.

The Select Committee was active during the 110th and 111th Congresses. This is an archived version of the website, to ensure that the public has ongoing access to the Select Committee record. This website, including external links, will not be updated after Jan. 3rd, 2010.

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