Electric Cars & Politics – NY Follows California’s Lead, Georgia Seeks Relief For Hyundai

Some people cringe when we mention electric cars and politics in the same breath, but it’s impossible to separate the two, especially now that Congress has passed the so-called Inflation Reduction Act. A few weeks ago, California announced that it will ban the sale of passenger cars and light trucks with internal combustion engines by 2035. (Medium-sized and heavy-duty trucks will follow 10 years later).

New York Governor Kathy Hochul announced this week that her state is following California’s lead and will also ban gasoline and diesel-powered light commercial vehicles by 2035. Her press conference was a bit of an afterthought. New York actually said it would do this last year. But the way these things work in the US, only California has the ability to set a standard other than the one set by the EPA. When that happens, other states will be allowed to participate, but California will lead the parade.

As reported by The hill, Hochul told those in attendance at a news conference in White Plains, “We’re really putting our foot down on the accelerator and stepping up our efforts to make sure we have this transition — not some day in the future, but on a specific date, a specific year – in the year 2035.” To achieve this goal, she said 35% of new cars must be zero-emission by 2026 and 68% by 2030. All new school buses purchased must be zero-emission by 2027 and the entire fleet must meet these standards per 2035, according to the governor. “We actually have benchmarks to achieve, to show that we’re on track to get there,” Hochul said, stressing that the changes would not happen suddenly.

“We had to wait for California to make a move because there are some federal requirements for California to go first — that’s the only time we let them go first,” she added. “That’s okay. Once they make that decision, we’re able to step up right away and say now there’s nothing holding us back.”

Hochul directed the State Department of Environmental Conservation to implement the necessary legislative action to require all new passenger cars, pickup trucks and SUVs sold in New York State to be zero-emission by 2035.

Hochul also announced that the New York Power Authority has just completed the installation of its 100th high-speed EV charger as part of the state’s EVolve NY statewide charging network. New York state will receive $175 million as part of the bipartisan infrastructure bill put forth by the Biden administration that allocates $5 billion to install 500,000 chargers across America.

“So it’s going to help over 14 interstates in New York, especially those that are used by people in this community,” Hochul said. “So you will see that you have no more excuses.”

Georgia goes to bat for Hyundai electric cars

Hyundai Ioniq 3 models

Image credit: Hyundai

Sen. Raphael Warnock of Georgia has filed a bill in Congress that would roll back the effective date for when electric cars must be built in America to qualify for the new federal tax credit until 2025, when Hyundai’s new Georgia plant is expected to begin production cars. Hyundai feels the rug was pulled from under its feet when the Inflation Reduction Act was passed. The South Korean government has expressed its displeasure at the highest levels of the Biden administration.

According to Atlanta Journal Constitution, Warnock said, “I want to make sure we maximize the full potential of the bill, so I’m introducing the Affordable Electric Vehicles for America Act because I want to make sure Georgia consumers get the full benefit of the legislation we” have already passed . Here we have a partner (Hyundai) working with the federal government to create green energy jobs and a clean energy future. We should encourage them to do that work at the same time we encourage manufacturing in America, which they do.”

Warnock is locked in a tight race for re-election with Herschel Walker, a man who told the press last week he was not that bright and has done everything in his power to prove it. Nevertheless, Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp, who also wants to help Hyundai because it’s investing $5.5 billion in his state, couldn’t help but take a shot at Warnock by suggesting that he and his Democratic colleagues have solved the problem before the bill was passed. than trying to fix it afterwards. Here are two politicians who want the same thing but can’t find a way to work together to achieve their goals.

Takeaway

Electric cars are actually a very small part of the Inflation Reduction Act, which provides massive support for clean energy at all levels. It may be the most important piece of climate legislation ever passed by the United States, yet it was passed without the support of a single Republican member of Congress. Remember that when you go to the polls in November.


 

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