Welcome back! Today's Smart Brevity count: 1,240 words, < 5 minutes.
And this month marks 40 years since the Buzzcocks released "A Different Kind of Tension," so one of those propulsive cuts is today's intro tune...
President Trump's effort to yank California's power to impose vehicle carbon emissions rules that are tougher than federal standards is soooooo of-the-moment.
Driving the news: EPA this morning announced that they’re indeed revoking California’s waiver, stating it’s needed to ensure “there will be one, and only one, set of national fuel economy and greenhouse gas emission standards for vehicles.”
The big picture: Here's my scientific analysis of the reasons why the wider battle over vehicle emissions and mileage rules captures the zeitgeist of 2019...
The intrigue: EPA boss Andrew Wheeler this morning left open the possibility that when his agency and the Transportation Department finalize their rules, there might be some increases as opposed to an outright freeze at 2020 levels.
Go deeper: This Politico story unpacks Trump's claims about the vehicle safety and emissions effects of the administration plans.
Amid all the fighting over the future of vehicle standards, let's look at the past.
The chart above shows the progression of average mileage of cars and light-trucks sold in the U.S.
Why it matters: While fuel efficiency has been increasing, the gains sometimes stagnate, which is one reason why advocates are upset about weakening federal mandates.
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres labored to keep the focus on climate change as other topics grabbed the spotlight during a press conference ahead of a major UN summit next week, Axios' Amy Harder reports.
Why it matters: The topic often struggles for prime spots in diplomatic agendas, especially during other crises.
What's new: Guterres fielded questions on the Saudi oil attacks and President Trump’s rollback of environmental rules as he sought to preview next week’s UN Climate Action summit.
One level deeper: Guterres also deflected questions about Trump’s dismissal of climate science and his administration's move to roll back fuel efficiency standards.
What’s next: Guterres said he intends for at least some leaders to present specific plans on Monday toward reaching a 2050 goal of "carbon neutrality."
Gasoline prices have gone up across more than half the country following last weekend’s attacks on Saudi Arabia's oil infrastructure, Amy reports.
Where it stands: Since Monday, the national gasoline price average has increased 9 cents to $2.65 a gallon, according to AAA, which predicts it could jump as much as another dime this month.
One level deeper: The greatest increases are in the Midwest and Great Lakes region, which AAA spokesperson Jeanette Casselano says is not atypical because this region often sees high volatility.
The big picture: Gas prices remain pretty low, as they have the last few years, compared to a decade ago when they were hitting the $4 mark.
What’s next: Saudi officials hope to fully restore oil supply by month's end, and say half the 5.7 million barrels per day of production knocked offline is back.
Axios' Joann Muller explores an important part of the conflict between GM and its 46,000 striking workers: Both sides are unclear about where the industry is headed.
The big picture: Some of the uncertainty is around trade, some around emissions and mileage standards, but let's zoom in on her look at electric vehicles' role.
Why it matters: The shift toward EVs is a major source of anxiety for the union.
But EVs could also create new jobs making things like batteries, electric motors, electronics and thermal systems.
Exclusive: The Michael Bloomberg-backed Beyond Carbon campaign has launched a 6-figure digital ad buy just ahead of the 2-day climate forum with 2020 Democratic hopefuls that MSNBC is co-hosting today and Friday.
Where it stands: The campaign — running on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and YouTube — features commentary from Bloomberg, Hip Hop Caucus CEO Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr. and others.
Who they are: Bloomberg launched the $500 million Beyond Carbon effort earlier this year. It aims to wean the U.S. off coal and halt construction of new gas-fired power plants, among other priorities.
But, but, but: It's not the only deep-pocketed interest running new ads. A few days ago the powerful American Petroleum Institute launched a 7-figure buy with TV, digital spots and more.
"I don’t want you to listen to me. I want you to listen to the scientists."
Who said it: Swedish teen climate activist Greta Thunberg, who offered a very brief prepared statement at a congressional hearing yesterday.