California Sues Automakers for Selling Cars

Taking the burden of the entire planet’s global warming problems onto its ample Austrian-American shoulders, the state of California filed a lawsuit today against the six major automobile manufacturers, suing them for their contributions to global warming.

    General Motors, Ford, Toyota Motor Corp., DaimlerChrysler AG, Honda Motor Co. and Nissan Motor Co. have created a “public nuisance” by making millions of vehicles that emit huge quantities of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas that increases the temperature of the earth’s atmosphere, according to a complaint filed today in U.S. District Court in Oakland.

The state argues that the federal government isn’t doing squat to slow down emissions by mandating fuel economy increases, so that automakers are not stepping up to the plate on their own, so California felt compelled to take action. But will the whole planet see a cut of the settlement?

Getting the automakers to work harder to produce fuel efficient cars is admirable, but this kind of mega-suit is as likely to create global warming awareness as it is fodder for late night comedians.

Besides, should Toyota and Honda really be on the same list as GM and Ford? After all, Toyota builds the Prius, while GM builds the Hummer. May we recommend a separate class action against every asshole that bought a Hummer?


California Sues GM, Ford, Toyota Over Global Warming
[Bloomberg]

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  1. Hooray4Zoidberg says:

    Hummer is also currently running an ad campaign for the new H3 were they tote it’s 20MPG as some huge accomplishment.

  2. The_Truth says:

    GM is also the leader in Fuel Cell technology, which is the primary reason they are so far behind in hybrid technology. They placed their bets on a far off tech. To date they have invested US$1billion with another billion to come and the first consumer level vehicles are expected to hit in 2010.

    Toyota isnt guilt free:

    Land Cruiser 13/17 mpg
    FJ Cruiser 17/21 mpg

    This doesent excuse GM and Ford for their abuse of the SUV and truck craze, but Toyota isnt all its cracked up to be.

    Intrestingly I wonder why CA doesent sue the oil and tobbaco companies, after all its their product that actually ends up in the air…

  3. He says:

    Aren’t Hummers and many other trucks supposed to have truck license plates in California and be limited in where they can drive? I seem to recall the response from lawmakers being “that’s not the point of the law” or some other code for “I can’t make that many people that mad and keep my job”.

    Found it!
    http://www.slate.com/id/2104755/

  4. d0x says:

    The real problem is every friggen soccer mom in the United States seems to need a huge truck of SUV these days. I see ladies everyday driving Ford Excursions and for what!?

  5. LafinJack says:

    “The real problem is every friggen soccer mom in the United States seems to need a huge truck of SUV these days. I see ladies everyday driving Ford Excursions and for what!?”

    There is a massive disconnect between “need” and “want” in this country. Fix that and we’d be golden.

  6. suprnate says:

    Shouldn’t they be suing the airlines too? According to The Economist, air travel is the most emission-expensive way to travel.
    http://www.economist.com/business/displaystory.cfm?story_i

  7. I would like to make it clear the automobile emissions account for only a quarter of USA’s CO2 output. Even if everyone drove a zero emissions auto, we’d still be fucking ourselves.

    Keep in mind that the hydrogen in hydrogen fuel cells is harvested with the help of petrol – we can do it with water but the infrastructure and processing equipment, according to the people who would have to build it, is too expensive.

    The point is, reducing CO2 emissions has be a systemic effort. You should make fun of people driving SUVs because they spend more than $60 on a fillup, not because they’re contributing to global warming. If you live in a house with municipal electricity, you are just as guilty.

  8. Mojosan says:

    Hey, how’s the weather up there on your pedestal?

    So how many of you drink beer? How much energy is wasted brewing, refrigerating and transporting beer. You should drink water and save the planet.

    Air conditioning in your house?

    Food other than the most basic of people kibble?

    TV? (those flat screens REALLY burn the kilowatts)

    Computer?

    It’s silly to critisize people because they choose a different vehicle than you…you waste plenty of natural resourses on your own and don’t always choose the most resourse efficient options in life either.

    Lighten up.

  9. AcilletaM says:

    Shouldn’t they be suing the lawn mower industry too?

    I have to agree with dox. It’s amazing how many of those SUVs end up in a ditch when it snows because the person driving didn’t change how they were driving. They think they can still speed and stop quickly in snow or even rain because their “big truck” is supposed to be able to handle that.

  10. HankScorpio says:

    I think they would get more money if they sued every single one of their citizens that purchased cars where public transportation is available.

  11. cleigh says:

    Shouldn’t global warming as a concept be irrefutably proven, on a scale larger than just the past 30 years (say, like several thousand, or a couple million or whatever) before they go and start suing people over it?

    Just sayin’

  12. Sheik says:

    Beyond buying Energy Star compliant appliances and turning off lights there is not much that the average consumer can do, except choose not to buy a gas guzzling SUV. There should maybe some sort of tax for people that CHOOSE to drive vehicle with lower MPG ratings.

  13. Sheik says:

    Beyond buying EnergyStar compliant appliances and turning off/ unplugging them when not in use, there isn’t much we can do, except choosing to drive a car with a higher MPG, or taking public transportation. In most cases, there is only one choice of energy company in a given area. Choosing to drive a big SUV is your choice. Being such maybe there should be an added Greenhouse Tax for SUV drivers.

    I don’t think I will ever comprehend people’s need to drive Hummers. Its a status symbol that stems from people’s insecurities. What else would explain someone driving in NYC in a vehicle that alot of times takes up the entire one way street?

  14. Sheik says:

    sorry for the double/triple post typed the first one and it didnt appear until after i typed the secon one…

  15. LTS! says:

    I think the response from the major auto manufacturers should be to threaten an embargo on shipping any new cars to California and ordering their dealers in border states not to sell to Californians. This would probably go swimmingly for the politicians who thought up this lawsuit.

  16. Mr. Gunn says:

    I find the tiny little women driving great, huge cars phenomenon a little silly, myself, but given that it’s just another facet of conspicuous consumption, it’s pretty much silly by definition.

  17. mysliwya says:

    GM tried to sell an electric car but did not sell well. you can not put all the blame on automaker some has to go on the costomer. Auto makers must make a profit and if were not buying eviorment friendly cars why should GM or any other auto maker try to sell them. Good for the toyota an and honda making small fuel efficiant cars but toyota still makes the tundra witch get very little gas milage. some people need trucks and SUV there are many places and Jobs a Prius just cant handle. so till toyota and honda come out with a truck or suv that can get 60mpg there just as guilty as GM and Ford. GM has invested the most in hydrogen fuel

  18. Celeste says:

    There is plenty more than that that the average Joe can do. Replace your leaky old windows, redo your insulation, reset your thermostat – do you really need the house at 68 degrees in the summer? Hell, move into a smaller house. Those 3,000sq ft McMansions cost a LOT to heat and cool.

    SUVs – although I find people who can’t drive the vehicle they’re in mighty annoying – are hardly the cause of the world’s global warming problems. They’re merely a convenient scapegoat. Interesting, the level of hostility I see directed at SUVs, when there seem to be just as many people driving large trucks around that are never going to haul a single thing – and the trucks don’t get any better mileage. At least the SUV will fit additional passengers. (This, from someone who drives a sedan.)

  19. I keep my house at a cool 55 degrees….in the winter.

  20. Sheik says:

    i consider trucks in the SUV category, they are utility vehicles