Biden Will Introduce Tougher Exhaust Rules and Promote Electric Vehicles


WASHINGTON — President Biden will take action on Thursday to tighten exhaust gas emissions, one of the leading causes of planet-warming carbon dioxide pollution, and encourage American automakers to increase sales of electric vehicles.

Mr Biden will restore and slightly strengthen regulations to levels that existed under President Barack Obama, but weakened during the Trump administration. In addition, his administration is expected to announce that it has drafted even stricter auto-pollution rules for both passenger cars and heavy-duty trucks.

“I’m not kidding when I say electric vehicles are the future,” Mr. Biden said. wrote a tweet Wednesday evening. “Get ready for the big news tomorrow.”

It will also sign an executive order that sets the goal of having half of all vehicles sold in the United States electric by 2030.

In a sign of industry support, the president will be surrounded by the chief executives of the nation’s three largest automakers, as well as the president of United Auto Workers. Automakers will commit to electric vehicles as 40 to 50 percent of new car sales by 2030. just over 2 percent this year – on the condition that Congress pass $1 trillion infrastructure bill This requires $7.5 billion for a national network of electric vehicle charging stations.

Together, the government’s actions aim to rapidly shift the American auto market away from the polluting internal combustion engine and towards the zero-emissions electric vehicle, which Mr. Biden says is essential to combating climate change.

This goal faces several challenges.

Experts say that without making electric charging stations as common as corner gas stations today, it will not be possible for electric vehicles to move from the niche to the mainstream. While labor leaders will attend the White House event, they remain concerned about the wholesale transition to electric vehicles, which will require fewer workers to be brought together.

But without a radical change in the type of vehicles Americans drive, it will be impossible for Mr. Biden to deliver on his ambitious commitment to reduce planet-warming emissions by 50 percent from 2005 levels by the end of this decade. Gasoline-powered cars and trucks are the single largest source of greenhouse gases produced in the United States, accounting for 28 percent of the country’s total carbon emissions.

“Today, the EPA is taking a big step forward in realizing President Biden’s ambitious agenda to address the climate crisis and create well-paid union jobs,” said Michael S. Regan, head of the Environmental Protection Agency. New rules with the Ministry of Transport. “These stringent standards are backed by solid science and technical expertise and foster the development of technology and innovation that will lead America to a clean energy future.”

With the effects of a warming planet in record levels of drought, deadly heatwaves, floods and wildfires around the world, scientists say simply reinstating Obama-era climate controls will not be enough.

“Obama began work to move us in the right direction to tackle climate change,” said Michael Gerrard, director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School. “Trump smashed them all. Biden is now putting the pieces together. But we are far behind. Much more difficult work has yet to come. Transformation of the transportation system and the electrical energy system, II. World War II is scale business, and it’s just getting started.”

Exhaust gas emissions regulations enacted by the Obama administration in 2012 required passenger cars sold by automakers to reach an average speed of approximately 51 miles per gallon by 2025. In 2020, Mr. Trump loosened the standard to about 44 miles per gallon by 2026.

Administration officials said the new Biden standard will be 52 miles per gallon by 2026, calling it “the strictest federal greenhouse gas standards in U.S. history.”

The White House estimates that the regulations would reduce two billion tons of carbon dioxide — about one-third of the total annual carbon dioxide pollution produced by the United States — and prevent the burning of nearly 200 billion gallons of gasoline.

The Biden administration then plans a set of stricter emissions regulations for vehicles manufactured after 2026. These are the rules Mr. Biden hopes will essentially push automakers to phase out the internal combustion engine. Because this second set of rules can be technically complex and legally ambitious, administration officials decided to quickly reinstate Obama regulations first to reduce some emissions while federal staff members took up the challenge of creating the future rule.

“Depending on how they write it, this second rule of thumb will set us on a path towards widespread use of electric vehicles by the end of this decade – or it won’t,” said Jeff Alson, a former EPA senior engineer and policy advisor working on it. Obama automobile emission standards.

“This is going to be a challenge, as regulators find it difficult to force major technology changes,” said Mr Alson. “It’s pretty rare. If you want to replace an internal combustion engine with a battery pack and replace the transmission with electric motors – that changes the bowels of gasoline-powered cars. It won’t be easy for federal agencies and politicians to force such a change unless we get the support of the public and automakers.”

Ford, General Motors, and Stellantis, the auto company founded this year after the merger of Fiat Chrysler and Peugeot, have announced in a joint statement their “joint aspirations” to reach 40 to 50 percent electric vehicle sales by 2030.

But they need government support to turn aspirations into action, they wrote. “This represents a dramatic shift from the US market today that can only be achieved with the timely deployment of a full suite of electrification policies,” said the statement, which sought government assistance for automakers, incentives for car buyers, a charging network and investments. in research and development and incentives to expand electric vehicle manufacturing and supply chains.

A last month report The International Council for Clean Transport, a research organization, has concluded that if around 36 percent of new car sales were electric, the country would need 2.4 million EV charging stations by 2030 – more than 216,000 in 2020.

Some environmental groups have expressed doubts that auto companies will deliver on their promises.

“Today’s proposal relies on unenforceable voluntary commitments from unreliable automakers to electrify 50 percent of their fleets by 2030,” said Dan Becker, director of the Campaign for Safe Climate Transport at the Center for Biodiversity.

“The auto companies’ voluntary commitments make the New Year’s resolution to lose weight look like a legally binding contract,” he said, adding: “Global warming is burning forests, scorching the West, and worsening storms. Now is not the time to propose weak standards and then promise strong ones.”

Meanwhile, labor unions have expressed some unease about the switch to electric vehicles, which require about two-thirds fewer workers than a gasoline-powered car or truck.

Ray Curry, president of United Auto Workers, said in a statement: “While the UAW states that companies are making voluntary commitments to electric vehicles, the focus of the UAW is on protecting salaries and benefits, not exact dates or percentages. It has been the heart and soul of the American middle class.”


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