April 19, 2023
Keys to the Biden administration’s Electric Vehicle Plans
By Debra Phillips
Last week’s EPA announcement of new tailpipe rules was the boldest vision for the U.S. transportation system since the Eisenhower administration’s investments in the Interstate Highway System. Much of the conversation around Administrator Regan’s announcement has centered on the impacts to the automotive industry, its ability to produce affordable EVs and consumer tax credits to achieve the goal of 67% on American roadways. However, relatively little has been said about the electrical system, grid, supply chains and infrastructure required to enable the Administration’s goal. The electroindustry is at the epicenter of the enabling environment for widespread EV adoption. As the backbone of the electrical system, NEMA members manufacture the EV charging equipment, transformers, wire and cable, and energy demand response technologies that are essential to the EV system. EPA’s new requirements are predicated on re-shoring critical mineral extraction and processing, increasing the domestic manufacturing of electrical steel, streamlining the permitting process for increased electric transmission, and investing in a sustainable domestic workforce to support the required manufacturing and construction.
NEMA calls upon the Biden administration and members of Congress to set differences aside and focus on creating a policy landscape that will allow for an American manufacturing renaissance to power this country into the electrified future.
Policymakers, consumers and local implementing agencies must continue to move this conversation forward. Yesterday, the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee held a hearing on the EPA’s proposed vehicle emission standards where we hope the conversation evolved beyond the proposed regulation to the enabling policy environment required to achieve the goal of widespread EV adaptation.
On April 27th, I’ll be moderating a panel discussion on the future of transportation at the ITS America Conference. We will be eager to hear from the automakers, technology providers and digital solutions companies involved in advancing our transportation system into the electrified, connected, autonomous, safer and more sustainable future.
Like most of our greatest societal challenges, EV adoption requires a cross-industry effort with supporting policy instruments. NEMA and our member companies stand ready to play our role in electrifying all sectors of our economy and we call on policymakers to step up and play theirs.
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