Federal Laws and Incentives for Other
The list below contains summaries of all Federal laws and incentives related to Other.
Laws and Regulations
Alternative Fuel Definition - Internal Revenue Code
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) defines alternative fuels as liquefied petroleum gas (propane), compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, liquefied hydrogen, liquid fuel derived from coal through the Fischer-Tropsch process, liquid hydrocarbons derived from biomass, and P-Series fuels. Biodiesel, ethanol, and renewable diesel are not considered alternative fuels by the IRS. While the term "hydrocarbons" includes liquids that contain oxygen, hydrogen, and carbon and as such "liquid hydrocarbons derived from biomass" includes ethanol, biodiesel, and renewable diesel, the IRS specifically excluded these fuels from the definition. (Reference 26 U.S. Code 6426)
Point of Contact
U.S. Internal Revenue Service
Phone: (800) 829-1040
Alternative Fuel Definition
The following fuels are defined as alternative fuels by the Energy Policy Act (EPAct) of 1992: pure methanol, ethanol, and other alcohols; blends of 85% or more of alcohol with gasoline; natural gas and liquid fuels domestically produced from natural gas; liquefied petroleum gas (propane); coal-derived liquid fuels; hydrogen; electricity; pure biodiesel (B100); fuels, other than alcohol, derived from biological materials; and P-Series fuels. In addition, the U.S. Department of Energy may designate other fuels as alternative fuels, provided that the fuel is substantially non-petroleum, yields substantial energy security benefits, and offers substantial environmental benefits. For more information, see the EPAct website. (Reference 42 U.S. Code 13211)
Point of Contact
U.S. Department of Energy
Phone: (202) 586-5000
Fax: (202) 586-4403
Fuel Economy Test Procedures and Labeling
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is responsible for motor vehicle fuel economy testing. Manufacturers test their own vehicles and report the results to the EPA. The EPA reviews the results and confirms a portion of them using their own testing facilities. To aid consumers shopping for new vehicles, the EPA redesigned the fuel economy window sticker posted on all new cars and light trucks starting with Model Year 2013 vehicles to be easier to read and understand. The EPA also redesigned fuel economy window stickers for electric and other advanced vehicles. The EPA is responsible for providing the posted fuel economy data and does so through the FuelEconomy.gov website. For more information, visit EPA's Fuel Economy website. (Reference 40 CFR 600)
Point of Contact
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
Phone: (202) 272-0167
Vehicle Fuel Economy and Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards
Vehicle manufacturers must meet fuel economy and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards for vehicles sold in the United States. The U.S. Department of Transportation's (DOT) National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) regulates fuel economy standards, while the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates GHG emissions.
NHTSA's Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) program and EPA's light-duty vehicle GHG emissions program set standards for passenger cars, light-duty trucks, and medium-duty passenger vehicles. By Model Year (MY) 2025, these vehicles must meet an estimated combined average fuel economy of 48.7 to 49.7 miles per gallon or higher. The standards provide flexibility to manufacturers, including the ability to earn credits for alternative fuel vehicles. For more information on the standards through MY 2016, see the final rule in the Federal Register. For information on the standards from MY 2017 through MY 2025, see the final rule in the Federal Register.
NHTSA and EPA also regulate fuel economy and GHG emissions for on-road vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 8,500 pounds or greater and the engines that power them. For MY 2014 through MY 2018 heavy-duty and medium-duty vehicles that are not already covered by the standards described above, manufacturers must meet increasingly stringent fuel economy and GHG emissions standards tailored to each of three main regulatory subcategories: combination tractors (also known as semi trucks); heavy-duty pickup trucks and vans; and vocational vehicles (such as delivery, refuse, and tow trucks; transit, shuttle, and school buses; and emergency vehicles). The standards provide flexibility, allowing for emissions and/or fuel consumption credits to be averaged, banked, or traded. For more information, refer to the final rule in the Federal Register.
For more information, see the EPA's Regulations and Standards website and NHTSA's CAFE website. (Reference 40 CFR 85-86, 600, 1033, 1036-1037, 1039, 1065-1066, and 1068; 49 CFR 523, 531, 533-534, and 537-538; and 49 U.S. Code Chapter 329)