Newly proposed auto emission standards are making the Biden administration’s expectation for the future of cars as clear as unpolluted air: Americans should buy EVs.
On Wednesday, the Environmental Protection Agency announced Biden Administration proposals aimed at creating “the strongest-ever pollution standards for cars and trucks.” The twin proposals — one for light and medium duty vehicles like passenger cars, and the other for heavy duty trucks — seek to improve air quality and reduce climate pollution by limiting the amount of gas-powered cars on the road.
Rather than focusing on cleaner tailpipe emissions from fossil fuel-burning cars, the central thrust of this proposal will be on reducing emissions by keeping such vehicles off the road altogether. For instance, if the rules go into effect, 67 percent of car sales would be electric vehicles by 2031, according to EPA projections.
The EV industry is already growing fast. Before this proposal, S&P had already estimated that electric vehicles will account for 40 percent of overall car sales by 2030. But enforcing stringent emissions rules would be like a Mario Kart mushroom boost to EV manufacturing. Although maybe less fun for car companies, since these new rules would mean a major compliance overhaul. The auto industry is already trending green, but these new standards just set the pace of EV adoption even faster. For the average consumer, that means car options will soon be mostly electric.
The Agency estimates that the new standards could save 50 billion tons of carbon emissions by 2055. The proposed emission standards aren’t just about clean air though. It would wean the U.S. off of foreign oil dependency “by approximately 20 billion barrels.” The EPA also notes that drivers could save an estimated $12,000 in fuel and maintenance costs by switching to an EV.
The proposals will be published in Federal Register on April 13, which will make them available for public comment. If these rules go into effect, Biden’s vision for an electric future is green lights all the way.