How Would You Design an EPA Label?

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(Houston, TX - Wendy Siegle, KUHF NewsLab)  If you’re at the dealership and itching to purchase a new car but wish there was an easy way to tell what its environmental impact would be, hold tight. Next year, it could be as easy as checking the window of your dream car for its fuel economy label.

EPA and DOT officials unveiled two different designs this week, both of which contain information on greenhouse gas emissions and other air pollutants. One of the proposed labels would give new cars a letter grade for overall fuel efficiency and carbon emissions, from A down to D (at right).  Gasoline-only autos would score lower than fully electric vehicles and plug hybrids – a proposed change automakers aren’t too happy about.  The second proposed sticker shares the same information as the first (including the number of Co2 grams per mile), but it doesn’t have a letter grade (EPA proposals here). Its design looks more like the current label, centering on how many miles per gallon the car gets, and the estimated annual fuel cost.  The winning design would start showing up on 2012 models.

Federal regulators are seeking public input on the two labels.  What would you put on the label, to tell you what you want to know about a new car?  Help redesign it by commenting at left now.

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