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Biden Announces EV Target, New Standards

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August 6, 2021—President Joe Biden outlined on Thursday significant steps to advance the United States' position on electric vehicles and reduced vehicle emissions. 

According to a White House fact sheet, Biden will sign an executive order setting a new goal to ensure half of all new auto sales from American OEMs will be zero-emissions vehicles by 2030. The order will also outline long-term fuel efficiency and emissions standards by overturning Trump-era rollbacks of efficiency regulations. Ford, GM, Stellantis and the United Auto Workers union have all come out in support of the measure per the White House report. 

"These new actions...will strengthen American leadership in clean cars and trucks by accelerating innovation and manufacturing in the auto sector, bolstering the auto sector domestic supply chain, and growing auto jobs with good pay and benefits," the fact sheet read.

The order sets the groundwork for "a robust schedule for development of fuel efficiency and multi-pollutant emissions standards" through at least the next decade for most vehicles starting in 2027. The agreement between the White House and the major American OEMs was based off of a similarly structured agreement between California and five manufacturers. 

The EPA, U.S. transportation department and NHTSA will work together to more concretely outline what those standards will look like, but already the plan could deliver "around $140 billion in net benefits over the life of the program, save about 200 billion gallons of gasoline, and reduce around 2 billion metric tons of carbon pollution" per the fact sheet. 

The Motor and Equipment Manufacturers Association in a statement said in a news release that though it is still reviewing details of the order, it will focus on providing feedback that works to attain "stringent but realistic standards through 2026 that will provide much-needed regulatory certainty, strengthen manufacturing jobs, and achieve U.S. competitiveness," and it said it is looking forward to the challenges ahead.

“We are enthusiastic about continuing our work with the administration to establish a holistic framework for post-model year 2026 long-term standards that are ambitious but pragmatic and will allow utilization of a broad spectrum of advanced propulsion technologies," the MEMA said in a statement. "As we transition to cleaner transportation, diverse advanced technologies will help maintain the nation’s competitive edge, place U.S. innovation at the forefront, and further strengthen the American workforce.”


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