Connecticut Withdraws Electric Car Mandate

Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont (D) withdrew his state’s proposed electric car mandate, slated to end the sale of most gasoline and diesel-powered vehicles by 2035. The decision comes as other Democratic Party-led states such as New York and California have implemented similar sweeping mandates.

Earlier this year, the governor introduced a plan to end the sale of conventionally-fueled passenger vehicles by 2035. At the time, Lamont said that the move was meant as “decisive action to meet our climate pollution reduction targets.”

In addition to cars used by the general public, three-quarters of trucks and buses would also need to switch to electric.

The move to scrap the proposal was hailed by Connecticut Republicans.

State Sen. Kevin Kelly (R) said that Lamont’s decision was a “reasoned approach to address the growing concerns raised by working and middle-class families. Adopting California emission standards which ban the sale of gas-powered cars is a substantial policy shift which must be decided by the General Assembly.”

In particular, the Republican state Senate leader said that there had been “too many questions” around the state’s electrical grid and the cost of electrifying the state’s car fleet. Furthermore, he cited the potential “negative impact on urban, rural and working poor families.”

He cited the fact that the vast majority of the pollution within the state was caused by factors outside of Connecticut.

Kelly called for an American and international “approach to improve our air quality. A state-by-state strategy will only prolong the attainment of cleaner air.”

Republican members of the state legislature and its Legislative Regulation Review Committee protested the original proposal. Following the initial concerns, Democrats on the committee also questioned the electric vehicle plan.

While no final vote was taken, it appeared that the committee may have rejected Lamont’s original effort this week.

California led the effort to ban most conventionally-fueled cars, citing environmental concerns. In addition to the Golden State’s vehicle plan, New Jersey and New Mexico have passed similar mandates of their own.

In addition, states such as New York have also moved to restrict the use of gas-powered stoves.