What I told the EPA about its attack on Americans’ cars and mobility 

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The Biden administration is using the whole of government to stop Americans from driving gas-powered vehicles.

This campaign began right at the start of the administration. In 2021, President Biden issued an executive order on electric vehicles (EVs) “setting a goal that 50 percent of all new passenger cars and light trucks sold in 2030 be zero-emission vehicles, including battery electric, plug-in hybrid electric, or fuel cell electric vehicles.” 

Unfortunately, that extreme goal was just the beginning.

On May 5, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a proposed tailpipe emissions rule, which according to the agency, could mean as much as 67 percent of all new cars sold in the United States will be EVs by 2032.

If the administration’s EV dream comes true, it will soon become very difficult for Americans to buy the types of cars that they love and currently drive.

In other words, forget about consumer choice. The administration thinks it knows better than you what car you should drive. To the administration, its climate agenda is more important than consumer freedom. If its policies mean higher vehicles costs and reduced mobility, then so be it.

The end goal is to get rid of gas-powered vehicles, following in the footsteps of California which has banned the sale of new gas-powered vehicles by 2035.

President Biden may wish to ban gas-powered vehicles and have federal agencies get “creative” with statutes to achieve his personal ideological agenda. However, agencies are supposed to implement the will of Congress, not promulgate rules that Congress never authorized. Which is exactly what the EPA is doing when it comes to this proposed tailpipe emissions rule.

This week, the EPA heard from the public on its proposed rule. Below are my brief comments to the agency (they have been slightly edited), which I hope help to shed further light on this threat to individual freedom:

The EPA has stated, “The proposed standards are also projected to accelerate the transition to electric vehicles.” The agency goes on to point out that EVs could account for 67% of new light-duty vehicle sales by 2032.

The EPA is exceeding its authority. Congress hasn’t given the EPA the authority to use the Clean Air Act as a means to severely limit the availability of gas-powered vehicles and attempt to kill off the internal combustion engine.

Beyond its legal problems, what are some other issues with the rule?

Let’s start with the restrictions on consumer choice. Despite receiving massive subsidies, EVs accounted for just 5.8 percent of all new vehicle sales in 2022.  Less than 1 percent of all registered vehicles in 2021 were EVs.

EVs still cost about $18,000 more than gas-powered vehicles and are therefore financially out-of-reach for many Americans. Even at a lower price point, there are other problems with EVs, like long charging times and limited range, that make them more suitable as a wealthy person’s second car than a working family’s only car.

It’s clear Americans don’t want EVs, for good reason, but the EPA is going to use these standards so that Americans will have to buy EVs, not drive anything at all, or have to buy whatever new gas-powered vehicles might still be available for sale. 

Then there’s the rule’s impact on mobility.

Americans rely on driving cars to get from point A to point B, as evidenced by the fact that 92 percent of American households have access to at least one vehicle, with most households having access to two or more. Making it more difficult for Americans to purchase cars will soon impact everyday mobility, from getting to work to going to the doctor.    

For all this upheaval, the alleged reductions in greenhouse gas emissions are questionable. There are more greenhouse gas emissions from producing an EV than a gas-powered vehicle, which means it could take several years of driving an EV before offsetting these emissions. And if the battery needs to be replaced, which is a distinct possibility, then achieving any greenhouse gas benefits would be unlikely. 

Even a few years ago, claiming that the federal government would try and restrict people from driving gas-powered vehicles would have been viewed as absurd by many people. Well, here we are: What might have seemed unimaginable yesterday is our reality today.  Legislators can sit back and allow the Biden administration and its climate allies to dictate how we live our lives or they can push back now and put an end to this egregious attack on freedom. Let’s hope freedom prevails.