Buttigieg said he had “not heard of anything to that effect at the national or federal level,” when asked by a lawmaker at a U.S. House hearing.
The transportation secretary is aware of General Motors’ goal of ending sales of gas vehicles by 2035 and said: “I’ve not heard of that in a mandatory context but that certainly seems to be where the U.S. auto industry is headed.”
According to the Alliance for Automotive Innovation, which represents most major automakers including GM, $250 billion will be invested in vehicle electrification by 2023.
On March 22, Inside EVs reported both of California’s U.S. senators, Alex Padilla and Diane Feinstein, pressed the Biden administration to set a firm date on banning new gas vehicle sales. The number of lawmakers grew this week. According to the Automotive News report:
“On [March 24], a group of more than 70 U.S. House Democrats led by Rep. Doris Matsui urged Biden to set tough emissions rules to ensure that 60% of new passenger cars and trucks sold are zero-emission by 2030, while 10 U.S. senators led by Democrat Edward Markey urged Biden ‘to set a date by which new sales of fossil fuel vehicles will end entirely.'”
The letter also wants Biden to set a goal of “having all light-duty vehicles be zero-emission by 2035.”
In addition to calls for banning gas-powered vehicles, there have been calls to reverse some of the fuel efficiency regulations the former administration rolled back. Earlier, Inside EVs reported Tesla wants an immediate reinstatement of Obama’s CAFE penalty hike the Trump administration delayed.