Issues & Insights

Are You Ready For Biden’s Ban On Gas-Powered Cars?

Michael Movchin / Felix Müller. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

I&I Editorial

In the next couple of months, the Environmental Protection Agency will issue new fuel economy standards that could be impossible for carmakers to meet – without going electric. That, at least, is what President Joe Biden’s EPA Administrator Michael Regan is indicating.

In an interview with Bloomberg last week, Regan talked about imposing rules that meet
“the urgency of the climate crisis,” and “did not rule out future emissions requirements that create a de facto ban on new conventional, gasoline-powered automobiles, like an explicit phase-out ordered by California Gov. Gavin Newsom.”

Regan could, for example, require automakers to sell cars that get an average of 70 mpg – something that only electric cars could meet. The most fuel-efficient hybrid on the market tops out at 59 mpg. The most efficient gas-powered car – the tiny Mitsubishi Mirage – gets 39 mpg.

The prospect of a Biden ban on gas-powered vehicles shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone. As we noted last year, Biden promised voters he would do just this – impose regulations on automakers that they could only meet by selling electric cars.

As a matter of fact, he promised that on his first day in office, he’d develop “rigorous new fuel economy standards aimed at ensuring 100% of new sales for light- and medium-duty vehicles will be zero emissions.”

Let’s leave aside the fact that there is no “climate crisis” that requires urgent responses. The term “climate crisis” is an invention of environmentalists to create a sense of panic. The science says that, at worst, there will be a gradual warming over the next 100 years – giving everyone plenty of time to make whatever adjustments are necessary.

Let’s leave aside, too, the fact that the environmental benefits of electric cars are wildly exaggerated. Studies that look at the entire lifecycle of vehicles – from manufacture to junkyard – find that electric cars can produce as much or more greenhouse gases as traditional cars.

Let’s also leave aside the fact that forcing a massive switch to electric cars will produce an enormous spike in the demand for electricity at a time when Biden is also planning to force utilities to ditch coal, oil, and natural gas for far less reliable “clean energy.”

The biggest problem with what Biden is planning is that car buyers don’t want electric vehicles.

Last year, consumers bought a grand total of 296,000 electric cars, which accounted for a mere 2% of all cars sold. By comparison, Chevy sold more than twice as many Silverado pickup trucks in 2020. (Which, by the way, get just over 20 mpg.)

Even in greener-than-thou-California – which plans to ban the sale of gas-powered cars in a little over a decade – electric cars comprised only 6% of car sales last year.

Biden’s plan, then, is to force consumers to buy cars that they don’t want or can’t afford – which is a hugely expensive proposition, not only for car buyers but also for taxpayers. Biden has already said he wants to spend almost $180 billion on electric car subsidies, including tax rebates, payments to owners who trade gas-powered cars for EVs, money to build charging stations, subsidies for battery makers, etc., etc.

And for what? Even if Biden could wave a magic wand and make the 275 million vehicles on the road battery-powered, the impact on global temperatures would be infinitesimal.

So why bother? Well, why does the left do anything? Because its primary goal is to control what we can do, what we can buy, how we live our lives. The “climate crisis” is just a convenient excuse.

The late great conservative icon M. Stanton Evans put it best: “Liberals don’t care what you do,” he quipped, “as long as it’s compulsory.”

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board

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10 comments

  • Rural America cannot exist on electric cars. The distances in many states make all electric vehicles impossible. My wife works from her home office in North Carolina three weeks a month. One week she travels to the home office in Annapolis Maryland a trip of over 400 miles. There are no electric vehicles that can accomplish that trip without a recharging stop of at least 3 hours. The Tesla model 3 long range only has a highway range of 230 miles. Electric cars are far more suited to city life where speeds are low and recaptured energy from braking helps recharging but still range is limited. My V9 pickup truck has a range of 500 miles and with a 10 minute fuel stop another 500 miles is easy.

  • The author provides information but misunderstands.

    Biden does not intend for you to buy an electric car. He intends for you to walk.

    How do we know this? Biden has not made any plans to upgrade the electricity generation/grid to handle the massive power demand of America’s car/truck fleet.

    Liberals think we all need to stay home in our cubicles. Just not them.

    So this is how they will do it. Mandate a switch to unaffordable electric cars; make no effort to provide the accompanying electricity supply. (and like landlords all over the country will install a charging Kiosk for my plug-in in front of my apartment. smh)

    Do you see it? Open your eyes. The Democrats intend to close out your mobility. Big Business intends to help them do it. Mussolini would be so proud.

  • Weakest link to EV growth is the material supply chain. There may not be enough minerals and metals in the world to achieve the planned EV growth.

    Summary: With less than 8 million EV’s currently operating on the world’s highways, a Cambridge University study showed that replacing all the United Kingdom’s 32 million light duty vehicles with next-generation EVs would require huge quantities of materials to manufacture 32 million EV batteries. It is becoming more and more obvious as States and Countries jump onto the EV train, that there may be insufficient materials in the world to complete those EV dreams.

    https://www.cfact.org/2021/02/15/weakest-link-to-ev-growth-is-the-material-supply-chain/

  • AS all good Progressives/Marxists/Communists/Socialists intone, “The people don’t know what’s good for them, we do.”

  • If the Cubans can keep cars running for 50 + years , just watch what Americans do when they are faced with buying vehicles that people really don’t want!

  • The insane, dementia addled autocrat in the white house will destroy our nation.

  • Biden wants the poor to subsidize the electric car purchases of the affluent.

  • Just as soon as Biden the Stupid is will to give up his luxeeries Air Force one the Limos and what else the same gose to all the world leaders these arrogant old Peacocks

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