California senators Alex Padilla and Dianne Feinstein are urging the Biden administration to set an end date for the sale of gasoline-powered passenger vehicles in the U.S. Additionally, the Democratic senators have asked Biden to restore the state’s right to set its own standards with regard to vehicle fuel economy and emissions.
According to a recent report from Reuters, Padilla and Feinstein sent President Biden a letter on Monday asking the Biden administration “to follow California’s lead and set a date by which all new cars and passenger trucks sold be zero-emission vehicles.” As GM Authority covered back in September, California has set a goal to phase out the sale of gasoline-powered passenger vehicles by 2035.
“We believe the national baseline should, at an absolute minimum, be built around the technical lead set by companies that voluntarily advanced their agreements with California,” wrote Padilla and Feinstein in the letter, according to Reuters. “California and other states need a strong federal partner.”
Back in 2019, several automakers, including BMW, Ford, Honda, and VW, signed onto an agreement with California in to set stricter fuel economy standards by 2026. The deal was signed in response to the loosening of fuel economy standards by the Trump administration, which rewrote policies enacted under the Obama administration.
Although the Biden administration has yet finalize an end date for the sale of gasoline-powered passenger vehicles, it has voiced strong support for widespread electric vehicle adoption, including funding for additional EV charging stations. Additionally, the Biden administration has announced plans to replace the entirety of the federal government’s fleet, some 650,000 vehicles, with new “Clean electric vehicles made right here in America made by American workers.”
Additionally, Biden has urged U.S. regulatory agencies to reconsider national fuel efficiency standards.