US Accelerates Shift to Electric Vehicles with New Emission Standards

US Accelerates Shift to Electric Vehicles with New Emission Standards

In a significant move to combat climate change and reduce the carbon footprint, the Biden administration has announced the strictest regulation on vehicle exhaust emissions ever introduced in the US. This initiative is aimed at accelerating the auto industry’s shift to electric vehicles (EVs).

The new regulation includes a target for 56% of all new US vehicles sold to be electric by 2032. This is a considerable increase from current levels, which saw EVs making up less than 8% of all new car sales last year. The goal was softened from last year’s draft in a concession to car-makers, but the Biden administration maintains that it will still dramatically reduce planet-warming gases.

The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that the regulation will prevent 7 billion tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions over the next 30 years. The new measure increasingly limits the amount of pollution permitted from vehicle exhausts year by year1. Car-makers that do not meet the new standards will face stiff fines.

The US is taking a more moderate approach than the European Union and UK, which will ban all sales of petrol-powered cars from 2035. However, the American car industry pointed to slower electric vehicle (EV) sales growth in objecting to a draft of the rules last year.

Electric vehicles
Electric vehicles

The rules are expected to face legal challenges from the oil industry and Republican-led states. It could ultimately be settled by the Supreme Court. Despite the potential hurdles, environmental groups broadly welcomed the measure.

This policy highlights the political tightrope President Biden must walk. As he runs for re-election against his Republican challenger, Donald Trump, the president is trying to win over car workers in the potentially pivotal state of Michigan, while also taking steps to address climate change, a key issue for many Democrats.

For more information, please refer to the original articles on Times of India and BBC News.

How will this affect car prices?

The shift towards electric vehicles (EVs) is expected to have a significant impact on car prices. Here are some key points to consider:

  1. Initial Cost: Electric vehicles are currently more expensive than their gasoline counterparts due to the high cost of batteries, which can account for 40-50% of the cost of a new EV. However, this cost is expected to decrease over time due to advancements in technology and economies of scale.
  2. Operating Cost: Electric vehicles tend to have lower operating costs. They require less maintenance as they have fewer moving parts that can break compared to gas-powered engines and they don’t require oil changes. Additionally, the cost of charging an electric vehicle is generally lower than the cost of gasoline.
  3. Market Trends: In 2020, consumers spent USD 120 billion on electric car purchases, a 50% increase from 2019, which breaks down to a 41% increase in sales and a 6% rise in average prices. The rise in average prices reflects that Europe, where prices are higher on average than in Asia, accounted for a bigger proportion of new electric car registrations.
  4. Future Projections: As more countries set ambitious targets for EV adoption and implement policies to incentivize the transition, the demand for EVs is expected to increase. This could potentially lead to a decrease in prices due to increased competition and technological advancement.

In conclusion, while the initial purchase price of electric vehicles may be higher, the total cost of ownership, which includes operating and maintenance costs, could be lower than traditional gasoline vehicles. This, combined with environmental considerations and changing regulations, could make electric vehicles an increasingly attractive option for consumers.

What are some other benefits of electric vehicles?

Electric vehicles (EVs) offer numerous benefits, not only to the individual owner but also to society at large. Here are some key benefits of electric vehicles:

  1. Lower Running Costs: EVs are generally cheaper to run than conventional vehicles because electricity is less expensive than fossil fuel. Moreover, the cost of charging an EV can be further reduced by using renewable energy sources like solar power.
  2. Lower Maintenance Costs: With fewer moving parts and no need for oil changes, exhaust system repairs, or timing belt replacements, EVs typically have lower maintenance costs than traditional vehicles.
  3. Environmental Benefits: EVs produce zero tailpipe emissions, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving overall air quality. They also cont