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Biden & EPA Vigorously Pushing EV Adoption | Makers Worried!

  • Biden suggests, by 2032 EVs will account for 2/3 of new passenger cars and 1/4 of new heavy trucks sold in the US.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) can set emission limits for each manufacturer but cannot impose a sales cap on electric vehicles.
  • Republicans serving as attorneys general have already filed lawsuits challenging the new regulations in court.
  • By 2032, regulations would require that 46% of new medium-duty trucks and 67% of new light-duty passenger cars sold be entirely electric.
  • By 2032, all-electric vehicles will make up half of the new buses and a quarter of new heavy trucks sold.
  • Concern among labor unions is that the switch to all-electric vehicles could lead to job losses and poorer profits.
  • Some automakers have questioned the EPA’s justification for exceeding the administration’s goal.

In an effort to combat climate change, the Biden administration has proposed new regulations that would mandate that by 2032, two-thirds of new passenger cars and a quarter of new heavy trucks produced in the US would be electric vehicles. The rules would force automakers to make larger investments and, ultimately, put an end to internal combustion engines. Only 5.8% of new cars sold in the US last year were all-electric vehicles, and less than 2% of new heavy truck sales were all-electric trucks.

Img Credit: Motoring Electric

The Government (or) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) should restrict the pollution produced by the total number of cars each manufacturer sells, but it cannot/shouldn’t compel automakers to sell a specific percentage of electric vehicles. The only way manufacturers can comply with the EPA’s stringent rule is to sell a predetermined number of zero-emission automobiles. Businesses that don’t meet the criteria risk penalties, including billion-dollar fines. Some who view the new measures as excessive government action, such as Republican attorneys general who have brought legal actions against the Biden administration’s climate plans, are likely to oppose them in court.

By 2032, 67% of sales of new light-duty passenger vehicles—from sedans to pickup trucks—will be all-electric, thanks to the proposed limits on exhaust emissions. By the same year, 46% of sales of new medium-duty trucks, including delivery vans, will be powered entirely by electricity or by some other type of zero-emission technology. The EPA also put up a proposal for heavy-duty vehicles that would mandate that by 2032, all new buses and heavy trucks sold, including 18-wheeler large rigs, would be electric only.

Both the regulations taken together would cut down on carbon dioxide emissions by the amount produced over two years by all US economic sectors. The shift to all-electric vehicles that the Biden administration envisions could lead to job losses and poorer earnings, according to several autoworkers and manufacturers. Major automakers have made significant investments in electrification, but they are concerned about consumer demand for the more expensive all-electric vehicles, the availability of batteries, and how quickly a nationwide network of charging stations can be established.

The construction of numerous new battery manufacturing and electric vehicle plants in southern states that are politically unfriendly to organized labor and where wages are generally low is causing labor unions special anxiety. Autoworkers worry about job losses since it takes fewer workers to manufacture electric automobiles than vehicles with internal combustion engines. According to Shawn Fain, president of the United Auto Workers in Detroit, “There is no good reason why electric vehicle manufacturing can’t be the gateway to the middle class that auto jobs have been for generations of union autoworkers.” He also noted that the industry is putting corporate greed ahead of economic justice.

Since Vice President Biden released an executive order ordering government policies to ensure that 50% of all new passenger vehicle sales are electric by 2030, automakers have been addressing their concerns to the president directly. This week, when it became known that the new rules were intended to go even further, some automakers rebelled. How the EPA could justify “exceeding the carefully researched and data-driven goal established by the government in the executive order” was questioned by John Bozzella, president of the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, which is comprised of significant US and foreign automakers. But, the proposed measures by the Biden administration seek to put the US on track to reduce its global warming emissions at the rate that experts say is necessary for all countries to do in order to escape the most catastrophic effects of climate change.