The White House’s push to electrify America’s transport system has united two rivals for the favors of Congress: the oil lobby and the corn lobby.
Bloomberg reports that lawmakers supporting the oil and the bioethanol industries had joined forces in opposing the Biden administration’s EV plan, focusing on the plan to electrify the federal fleet.
According to the lawmakers—50 of them, all Republicans—the plan will make the United States dangerously dependent on China and also jeopardize its climate change goals, they said in a letter.
The authors note the fact that China is the source of almost all the global supply of rare earths, which are used in EV batteries and electronics, saying Biden’s EV-related executive order “creates a dependency on foreign adversaries.”
They also pitched biofuels as a quicker and easier way of reducing carbon emissions from the federal vehicle fleet, saying, “Instead of signing orders that will be costly, may have a slight carbon emission reduction over 15 years away and bolster our greatest foreign adversary -- China -- you ought to be turning to the liquid fuel sector for real solutions.”
The oil industry and the biofuels industry are, because of their opposing interests, natural “enemies.” They have each lobbied against the other in Congress—that is, until now. With the new threat of EVs looming large, those opposing interests seem to have been, at least temporarily, forgotten.
President Biden in December signed an executive order seeking to make the federal government of the United States carbon neutral by 2050, eyeing a 65-percent emissions reduction by 2030. Per the order, the federal government will replace its fleet of 600,000 cars and trucks with electric vehicles and upgrade the energy efficiency of its 300,000 buildings. The order also envisages the addition of more low-carbon electricity to the grid.
By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com
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