California Senators Push Biden to Set End Date for Gasoline-Car Sales

The shift to electric vehicles is underway, but California’s two US senators are looking to expedite it: According to a report from the Reuters news service, the two senators are pressing President Biden to set a date by which new gasoline-powered vehicles will no longer be sold in the US. Last fall, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order banning the sale of new gas-powered vehicles beginning in 2035.

Senators Dianne Feinstein and Alex Padilla sent the letter to President Biden today, asking the president to follow California’s lead on the transition to electric vehicles, Reuters reported. Biden hasn’t said that he will commit to any timeline for a sales ban of gas-powered vehicles, but his campaign site during the Democratic primary did say he aimed to develop “rigorous new fuel-economy standards aimed at ensuring 100 percent of new sales for light- and medium-duty vehicles will be electrified.” By lacking a timeline for that goal, Biden was in the minority of those in the Democratic primary.

Nonetheless, President Biden has taken steps to increase the number of electric vehicles on the road. Shortly after taking office, Biden signed an executive order saying that the federal fleet of vehicles, of which there is roughly 645,000, will be replaced with electric vehicles.

The senators’ letter also requested that Biden restore California’s leadership on emissions standards; that leadership was eroded during the Trump presidency, particularly when the EPA revoked California’s waiver to set stricter emissions standards. The senators requested that the emissions standards which California and several automakers—including Ford, Honda, Volkswagen, Volvo, and BMW—agreed to last summer be made the federal standard. Those automakers and California agreed to increase average fuel economy to 51 mpg by 2026. On his first day in office, Biden signed an executive order directing the government to revise fuel-economy standards.

Let us know when you think we’ll see the end to gas-only car sales in the United States—or if it will never happen—in the comments below.

From: Car and Driver

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