Washington seeks to ban gas-powered vehicles by 2035

Washington seeks to ban gas-powered vehicles by 2035

Monumental change will hit low- and middle-class Washingtonians especially hard. 

State lawmakers and Gov. Jay Inslee are moving forward with plans to ban the purchase of gas-powered vehicles by 2035. 

In addition, the governor has declared a statewide goal for all “private” new car sales to be zero-emission vehicles by 2030.

The state is trying to sweeten the deal by offering tax incentives for wealthy Washingtonians who can afford to  make the switch to electric. On top of the new $7,500 federal tax credit for certain EVs that was instituted as part of the Democrats’ $369 billion climate spending bill, Washington residents can also get up to $1,300 in tax exemptions if they purchase a new EV under the price of $45,000 or a used one under $30,000.

According to The Seattle Times, only about 8% of the 4.7 million passenger vehicles currently registered in the state are fully electric. That is a monumental shift in only eight years – and there is no strategy in place to ease the transition. 

Here are a few of the issues we can expect if the mandate takes effect:

  • The charging time for trucks is likely unworkable for the industry.
  • No infrastructure exists to create and supply this many batteries.
  • The average EV costs $66,000. This mandate will cost consumers and businesses BILLIONS.
  • Heavy Duty Electric Vehicles (HDZEV) will NOT work for the diverse scenarios in which trucking works. Add to this the estimated cost of a HDZEV is $200,000 to $800,000 or 3 or 4 times more than a traditional clean diesel tractor. Creating a risky, expensive, and unrealistic situation for many trucking companies.
  • Creating the charging infrastructure to support this mandate will be expensive and could take years.
  • The cost of electric grid upgrades needed for new EV charging loads are unknown and could be in the BILLIONS.

Similar ideology-driven laws have been disastrous in other states. The reality is, EVs are still too costly and don’t work for all drivers. 

The Department of Ecology has drafted rules to meet the 2035 gasoline engine ban and other proposed rule changes and is accepting public comments now through Oct. 19.

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