EPA is out of control. Here’s our plan to stop its illegal actions
The Environmental Protection Agency recently proposed a new regulation mandating that by 2032, 67% of new vehicle sales must be electric. That’s 11 times more than the mere 6% of new vehicle sales that are electric today.
The rule doesn’t explicitly set this mandate. Instead, it sets stringent new carbon dioxide emissions standards the EPA admits will force vehicle manufacturers to sell two-thirds electric. Average fleet CO2 emissions must drop to 82 grams per mile – one-fourth of the 347 grams of CO2 per mile produced today. The EPA also released strict companion proposals for medium-duty and heavy-duty trucks.
The standards are reportedly part of a major push by the EPA this year to enact new emissions regulations that will raise energy and transportation costs for ordinary Americans and small businesses. In other words, the EPA is – once again – out of control.
When finalized, Job Creators Network Foundation’s Legal Action Fund plans to file suit to block this executive overreach that runs afoul of the Supreme Court’s “major questions doctrine.” This precedent, set last year, holds that only Congress has the power to make sweeping changes to the American economy – such as forcing the electrification of the auto industry in nine years – when existing federal statutes aren’t clear.
American automakers panned the proposed regulations as “aggressive by any measure.” The rules pose a major threat to the automotive industry, which employs nearly 400,000 Americans because fleets of expensive electric cars will crater consumer demand. Electric cars are around twice as expensive as their conventional counterparts.
Yet in a White House “fact sheet” accompanying the rule, the Biden administration lies to the American public and claims these regulations will “save consumers money” and create jobs.
Even with hundreds of billions of taxpayer dollars, American consumers haven’t warmed to electric vehicles. Only half to two-thirds of electric car owners purchase electric again – a terrible customer retention rate. And even this figure is juiced by the only popular electric car manufacturer, Tesla, whose owners almost never return to conventional cars.
This electric car transition also isn’t technically feasible. Daniel Yergin, one of the world’s leading energy experts, highlights how electric cars have 2.5 times more copper in them than regular vehicles. He cites the International Monetary Fund’s warning that such radical environmental policies will “spur unprecedented demand for some of the most crucial metals,” with price increases that “could derail or delay the energy transition itself.”
Nearly half of the world’s copper and 60% of lithium, needed for electric cars’ lithium-ion batteries, are processed in China. Yet, again, the Biden administration lies by claiming the emissions regulation will “strengthen American energy security” by making the country less reliant on oil.
Which energy source would you rather the country be reliant on: 1) oil, which we have more than enough of at home if the government would get out of the way, or 2) rare earth metals that don’t exist in the U.S.?
The kicker is that the emissions regulations would actually be bad for the environment. Consider that 70% of cobalt needed for lithium-ion batteries comes from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where children hand dig in crowded, primitive mines to try to service the West’s insatiable demand.
On a recent episode of Joe Rogan’s podcast, Harvard professor Siddarth Kara revealed there isn’t a cobalt mine in the Congo that doesn’t rely on child labor or slavery. “They dig in absolutely subhuman, gut-wrenching conditions for a dollar a day, feeding cobalt up the supply chain into all the phones, all the tablets, and especially electric cars.” This is dirty and nasty stuff that the Biden administration wants to double down on.
The government owns the roads and has the right to set reasonable emissions standards to prevent significant pollution. No one wants to return to three-stroke motors and smoggy cities. But Americans have won the war against pollution, demonstrated by the clear skies and dramatic reductions in the concentration of pollutants.
We should declare victory and move on to more pressing matters, not try to wring out the last carbon dioxide emissions from increasingly efficient vehicles through a massive and enormously costly socio-economic experiment. The EPA and Biden administration must be held accountable for this illegal overreach.