Electric car industry now has its own lobby group

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Tesla, Uber, Rivian, Lucid Motors and others have joined forces to create a new electric vehicle lobby group on Capitol Hill. The group, which calls itself the Zero Emission Transportation Association (ZETA), says its mission is for 100% of new car sales to be electric by 2030.

Some states are already moving in this direction. California recently announced plans to ban the sale of combustion engine vehicles by 2035. New Jersey has expressed interest in doing the same. However, the new industry group will not push states to require its residents to buy only electric vehicles, but rather supports policies to encourage their sale.

One of its five missions described in its advertisement is “consumer incentive at the point of sale”. In other words, the group will likely push for an extension of the federal government’s $ 7,500 federal tax credit for new purchases of electric vehicles. The tax credit was created under President Barack Obama in 2009.

ZETA will also encourage improvements in infrastructure, such as charging stations for electric vehicles, and emission standards to help push more customers to electric cars. The group supports policies that help electric vehicle manufacturers evolve their operations.

ZETA will likely find it easier to move its agenda forward under President-elect Joe Biden than under Donald Trump. While Trump has claimed to support electric cars on several occasions, his administration attempted to end the federal electric vehicle tax credit in his 2020 budget proposal, but was unsuccessful. Also under Trump, the Environmental Protection Agency rescinded Obama-era emissions rules aimed at forcing the auto industry to make less polluting vehicles.

One of Biden’s goals is to create 1 million new jobs in the auto industry and “position America as the world leader in the manufacture of electric vehicles and their inputs and parts.” He wants the federal government to replace all combustion engine vehicles in its fleet with electric vehicles. And he supports the Senate Democrats’ cash-for-clunkers plan to make sure every vehicle on the road is zero-emissions by 2040.

The group is made up of established players like Tesla and Uber; startups like Rivian, Lucid and Lordstown; commodity companies like Piedmont Lithium; and utilities like Southern Company, PG&E, Duke Energy, Con Edison, and Salt River Project. A full list of the 28 band members is available here.

Traditional car manufacturers are notably absent from this list. U.S. automakers are investing billions of dollars in electrification plans, but typically lobby lawmakers and administrative officials through their own channels. But it can work against the pressure for emission-free transport. For example, the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, which is backed by all of the major automakers, has tried to play both sides in the Trump administration’s fight with California over the country’s stricter emissions rules. State.

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