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West Virginia, Virginia Join Coalition to Challenge EV Rule

In all, 26 states are concerned about a proposed National Highway Traffic Safety Administration rule that would push automakers from a fleet average of 44.2 miles per gallon for passenger vehicles to a 57.8 mpg average model by 2032.

West Virginia and neighboring Virginia have joined a 26 state coalition that is challenging a Biden administration rule that seeks to expedite the nation's transition to electric vehicles.

The states are challenging a proposed National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) rule which, according to West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey, would effectively mandate automakers to shift to electric vehicles.

The proposed Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards unveiled recently by the NHTSA would push automakers from a fleet average of 44.2 miles per gallon for passenger vehicles sold in model year 2024 to a fleet average of 57.8 mpg in model year 2032, according to information provided by the attorney general's office.

"First of all, Congress did not give the NHTSA such power to reshape an industry that would ultimately affect the pocketbooks of consumers — this proposed rule is legally flawed and unrealistic," Morrisey said. "In short, this proposal is about transforming the American auto markets to lead with EVs. It aims to morph a longstanding scheme to regulate internal combustion engine vehicles into one that erases them from the market."

Morrisey said the NHTSA rule is part of a broader federal plan by the Biden administration to "substantially restructure" the economy.

"This is part of the Biden administration's so called 'green new deal,' which would ultimately kill America's energy security and independence by making us dependent on resources and components that can come only from abroad," Morrisey added in a prepared statement. "This would also have devastating effects in the daily lives of consumers — many of whom are already suffering from the burdens of historically high inflation."

Morrisey said America's power grid is already stretched thin and would not be able to handle the predicted uptick in electric vehicles.

"We simply aren't ready to jump into mining cobalt and producing the special magnets that would be needed in the next few years," the 26 state attorneys general wrote in the letter to the NHTSA. "This proposed rule will make us dependent on other countries, some are our geopolitical foes, for materials."

In addition to West Virginia and Virginia, the 26 state coalition also includes Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and Wyoming.

(c)2023 the Bluefield Daily Telegraph (Bluefield, W.Va.) Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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