Last month, President Barack Obama announced a proposal that would double the U.S. fuel efficiency standard.

Considering that my family’s hybrid gets about 50 mpg, the administration’s proposed target of 54.5 mpg by 2025 (signed onto by 13 major auto makers) seems entirely feasible.

This is a taste of the kind of leadership on energy independence and climate change that Obama promised in 2008. The new rules would reduce annual gas consumption by 23 billion gallons — as much as we currently import from Iraq and Saudi Arabia every year. In carbon dioxide reductions, that will be equivalent to closing 72 coal plants.

A reduction in oil use would be an especially welcome development for Maine, which currently stands as the fourth-most oil dependent state. Let’s make sure Obama follows through on this and doesn’t let the big oil lobbyists keep us stuck on outdated technologies.

Greg Kimber, Temple

Augusta and Waterville news

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