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Fuel Efficiency Rules Spark Lawsuit

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By Rebecca Sheir

Drivers could save at the pump under new federal rules aimed at boosting mileage and cutting emissions. But the Environmental Protection Agency's new fuel-efficiency standards are drawing a legal challenge from Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

Cuccinelli already has appealed the EPA's determination that greenhouse gas emissions contribute to global warming.

Brian Gottstein, a spokesperson for the Attorney General, says the new fuel efficiency standards represent a "tacit denial" of Virginia's request to have EPA reconsider its findings. Gottstein says Cuccinelli will file a notice of appeal with the Washington, D.C. Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals.

The new federal standards apply to vehicles built from 2012 through 2016. The rules call for an average of 35.5 miles-per-gallon within six years. That's up nearly 10 miles-per-gallon from the current average.

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