Democratic Senator Tom Carper wants Biden administration to ban gas-powered cars by 2035

Democratic Senator Tom Carper wants Biden administration to ban gas-powered cars by 2035

Moving in the direction of zero-emission electric transportation, it’s critical to lay strict rules to ensure that the U.S. positions itself as a top player in automobile production over foreign rivals like China, a top Democratic Senator suggested. Delaware Senator Tom Carper, who chairs the U.S. Senate Environment & Public Works Committee, said the Biden administration must move forcefully to achieve the goal of slashing greenhouse gas emissions in half by the end of current decade (2030).

In a letter sent to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Sen. Carper urged the Biden administration to follow the anti-pollution standards suggested by a deal brokered by California with five automobile manufacturers, and then set a goal to ban sale of new gas-powered vehicles by 2035.

Noting that the U.S. is already in the process of phasing out gas-powered vehicles to make way for environment-friendly EVs, the Democratic senator stressed that it is high time to encourage investments in electrification of vehicles.

In the letter to EPA Administrator Michael Regan, Sen. Caper wrote, “Strong policies in the United States will encourage those investments to be made here. The U.S. will gain in research and development, manufacturing and ultimately export opportunities in automotive technology.”

Under the Democratic Senator’s proposal, the EPA should apply California's 2019 framework agreement on carbon emission standards reached between the state and five automakers, viz. Ford, Honda, Volvo, and Volkswagen, and BMW. That deal aims to slash carbon emissions by 3.7 per cent per year from 2022 through 2026, and hike fuel economy requirements by a similar percentage.

After that, the Biden administration would have to implement stricter standards to meet the goals. Under Sen. Caper’s plans, half of all new cars sold in the country would be electric by 2030, and sales of new gas-powered cars would be totally banned by 2035. Automakers would get credits for selling zero-emissions battery electric cars.

Sen. Carper's push for stricter rules to cut greenhouse gas emissions comes as the Biden administration is reversing former President Donald Trump's bid to prevent California from setting up its own carbon emission standards.

The influential Senate Democrat also warned ignoring a the need to establish a robust zero emission vehicle deployment policy would put the U.S. at risk of losing thousands of automotive jobs and industry leadership to rival nations like China, in addition posing unnecessary public health risks from pollution.