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While Biden is pushing green cars, activist has a leading role in the highway safety agency


An environmental activist will play a key role in the Biden government’s electric vehicle initiative to incorporate various new fuel regulations over the next decade.

Ann Carlson, a law professor at the University of California Los Angeles, is on leave to serve as chief attorney for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, a division of the Department of Transportation that normally focuses on road safety.

Carlson, who has volunteered on climate disputes and speaks frequently on environmental issues, however, defined the assignment as working with the Environmental Protection Agency to tackle greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles.

“The NHTSA, as you know, has joint authority with the EPA over greenhouse gas standards for cars and trucks, and as a result, the early political appointments will for the first time have a strong climate record,” wrote Carlson when they presented their UCLA Colleagues in their new role announced an email on January 19th.

In her vacation document to UCLA, she wrote in response to the question “Division of work during the leave of absence” “the competent authority for climate standards for cars and trucks”.

The agency has “apparently long been misnamed” when it comes to climate only, joked Chris Horner, a board member at Government Accountability and Oversight, a private not-for-profit organization, not to be confused with the federal government’s Accountability Office. Government Accountability and Oversight is suing UCLA over public records of Carlson’s work on climate change proceedings.

“That the Biden government has recruited someone with their special record for this particular job is an indication of how the government is arming the NHTSA for the climate agenda,” Horner told Fox News in an email.

President Biden issued an executive order August 5 to set a goal of making 50% of all new vehicles sold in the United States electric by 2030. The Executive Order also states that the Environmental Protection Agency and the NHTSA will enact new climate regulations.


“The US Department of Transportation’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) will announce how to address the previous administration’s damaging setbacks in short-term fuel efficiency and emissions standards,” the white man said in a statement House. “The standards of the two agencies will function in a compatible manner through model year 2026, with the NHTSA proposed rule starting in 2024 model year and the EPA proposed rule going into effect a year earlier in 2023 model year.”

President Biden speaks after driving a Jeep Wrangler 4xe Rubicon on the South Lawn of the White House, Washington, Aug. 5, 2021, during an event about clean cars and trucks. (AP Photo / Susan Walsh)
(AP Photo / Susan Walsh)

Carlson will have multiple responsibilities, an NHTSA spokesman said Friday.

“The NHTSA’s chief counsel, as the agency’s chief legal officer, is responsible for providing legal advice on a wide range of topics and programs that come under NHTSA’s jurisdiction, including vehicle safety, road safety grants and fuel economy,” a Fox News spokesman said in a E-mail. “Ann Carlson is one of the country’s foremost legal scholars with a highly respected experience in policy analysis and teaching on climate change, environmental issues, including pioneering work in air pollution law and policy. She has dedicated her life to academic and public service.” . “

Carlson told the Fullerton Observer of her NHTSA job, “I’m part of a group of appointees who are realizing Biden-Harris’s commitment to making climate change a government priority.”

Prior to working for the government, Carlson was a leader on climate lawsuits and spoke out to the media about such litigation, Horner added.


“Public records show that Ms. Carlson is a key figure in several aspects of the climate litigation industry, serving as a media substitute for plaintiffs, on the indemnity firm team, recruiting other alternate academics for the crime effort, and working in other institutions like that Environmental Law Institute, for example to organize plaintiff witness briefings for federal judges, “Horner said.

Carlson advised plaintiffs on climate disputes pro bono, citing the $ 246 billion tobacco settlement from the 1990s in an August 2019 comment in the Los Angeles Times as a model for litigation against fossil fuel companies.

In May 2019, Carlson was part of a panel in the University of Hawaii’s environmental law program at the William S. Richardson School of Law that described climate disputes as “an effective tool for shifting the economic burden of climate change from taxpayers to polluters.”

In an April 2016 email message, Cara Horowitz – a colleague of Carlson’s at UCLA – said that the UCLA Emmett Institute on Climate Change and Environment is working with the Emmett Environmental Law and Policy Clinic at Harvard and the Union of Concerned Scientists to discuss “Prosecuting climate denial – along with a number of prosecutors and local prosecutors across the country.”


Carlson also worked with the Center for Climate Integrity, according to Government Accountability and Oversight emails.

The Center for Climate Integrity is an environmental group whose mission is to “organize work to organize climate responsibility, including supporting legal proceedings aimed at holding fossil fuel polluters accountable for the damage they cause”.


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