Coalition Of States Sue Biden Admin, California Over Electric Vehicle Mandates

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Authored by Katabella Roberts via The Epoch Times,

A coalition of Republican-led states is suing the Biden administration and the State of California in an attempt to prevent new electric vehicle mandates on truck owners and operators throughout the country from going into effect.

Two legal challenges were filed over the new emissions rules, Nebraska Attorney General Hilgers said in a statement on May 13.

They include a petition for review filed by a coalition of 24 states in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit which challenges the Biden administration’s new regulation setting stronger greenhouse gas emissions standards for heavy-duty vehicles.

That petition lists the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and its administrator Michael Regan as defendants.

In the legal filing, plaintiffs argue the EPA’s rule imposing stringent tailpipe emissions standards for heavy-duty vehicles effectively forces manufacturers to produce more electric trucks and fewer internal combustion trucks.

The EPA has said the new rules, which are set to take effect for model years 2027 through 2032, are needed to help combat climate change and will help avoid up to 1 billion tons of greenhouse gas emissions over the next three decades.

However, the infrastructure needed to support such vehicles is “virtually nonexistent” and they also have shorter ranges and require longer stops, according to Mr. Hilgers.

The new regulation will also negatively impact the economy and put extra pressure on power grids, according to the lawsuit.

Electric Trucks ‘More Expensive’

A separate coalition of 17 states and the Nebraska Trucking Association also filed a lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of California seeking to block a package of regulations that they say are “targeting trucking fleet owners and operators.”

That lawsuit lists the EPA and the California Air Resources Board as defendants.

Plaintiffs in the lawsuit are challenging a string of California regulations called “Advanced Clean Fleets” which aims to “accelerate a large-scale reduction in tailpipe emissions focusing on zero-emissions medium- and heavy-duty vehicles,” according to the California Air Resources Boards’s (CARB) official website.

The rules would ban big rigs and buses that run on diesel from being sold in California starting in 2036.

According to the CARB, the new regulation will save around $26.5 billion in statewide health benefits from criteria pollutant emissions and save fleet owners $48 billion in operating costs.

However, those regulations force truckers in and out of California to “retire their internal-combustion trucks if they want to come to California” and “transition to more expensive electric trucks” by 2035, the states wrote in the lawsuit.

The regulations could also damage the U.S. economy, they added.

Rules Could Impact ‘Untold Number of Jobs’

According to Mr. Hilgers, the rule also applies to “fleets that are headquartered outside of California if they operate within California” which he argues could have significant nationwide effects on the supply chain.

Both lawsuits argue that the Biden administration and California regulators are exceeding their respective authorities in introducing the rules.

The multi-state coalitions are being led by Nebraska.

The state is joined in its legal challenge by attorneys general from Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

Additionally, the Arizona State Legislature and the Nebraska Trucking Association have joined the lawsuit.

In a statement, Mr. Hilgers claimed California and an “unaccountable EPA” are “trying to transform our national trucking industry and supply chain infrastructure.”

“This effort—coming at a time of heightened inflation and with an already-strained electrical grid—will devastate the trucking and logistics industry, raise prices for customers, and impact an untold number of jobs across Nebraska and the country,” he continued. “Neither California nor the EPA has the constitutional power to dictate these nationwide rules to Americans.”

The Nebraska attorney general added that he was proud to be leading efforts to “stop these unconstitutional attempts to remake our economy.”

The Epoch Times has contacted the EPA and the CARB for comment.

 

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