Photo: Justin Sullivan
It’s a shock for absolutely no one, that the Wyoming Republican State Senator who sponsored a bill that would phase out electric vehicle sales in the state by 2035 said he never intended it to pass, and it was really just a stunt. According to Automotive News, State Senator Jim Anderson added that he doesn’t begrudge anyone for buying EVs. What a guy.
Basically, the bill only existed as a dumb middle finger to other states that were moving in the opposite direction, i.e. phasing out internal combustion-powered vehicles. It specifically takes aim at new rules from the California Air Resources Board which aims to push zero-emission vehicles by 2035.
Anderson says this is all being done in an effort to preserve customer choice. “It’s not good to dictate to the citizens what kind of vehicles they’re gonna buy, because of all the problems with [electric vehicles],” Anderson told Automotive News. He went on to say that the bill is meant to “make a statement.”
“If we pass it or don’t pass it, it doesn’t matter,” he said. So yeah, it was all just a big stunt to drum up outrage.
Part of the bill says that as EVs become the norm it will have “deleterious impacts” on Wyoming since the oil and gas industry has “long been one of Wyoming’s proud and valued industries.”
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Anderson said that despite the fact the bill encourages industries and citizens to limit sales and purchase of new electric vehicles, folks in Wyoming can still buy any type of vehicle they want.
The bill also contains a number of inaccuracies including the idea that battery materials are not “easily recyclable or disposable.” It adds that Wyoming’s landfills are incapable of handling “all the batteries that are hazardous material.”
A spokesperson for the Zero Emissison Transportation Association told AutoNews that the idea of EV batteries not being recyclable is “clearly not the case.” They added that most battery components are “infinitely reusable” as long as critical minerals maintain their purity.
The bill is functionally dead in committee, but if by some weird miracle it does make its way though and passes, it won’t really have much of an impact on vehicle sales. The outlet reports that car buyers in Wyoming only purchased 228 electric vehicles in the first 11 months of last year. Somehow that wasn’t the lowest total, though, as only 213 BEVs were purchased by North Dakota residents last year.
So, what have we learned here? Well, other than the fact some lawmakers will waste everyone’s time with pointless, dead-end, self-serving bills, nothing really. But, I suppose we already knew that.