Wyoming legislators are pushing a bill in Cheyenne that could phase out electric vehicles by 2035, to protect a state economy largely fueled by gas and oil.
Titled, "Phasing out new electric vehicle sales by 2035," the bill is sponsored by state Republican senator Jim Anderson and supported by senators Brian Boner, Ed Cooper and Dan Dockstader, as well as state House Representatives Donald Burkhart and Bill Henderson, also Republicans.
Legislators say oil and gas production has "long been one of Wyoming’s proud and valued industries," which has created countless jobs and contributed to the state’s economy.
The bill stresses the importance of gas-powered vehicles as they enable industries and businesses in the state to engage in commerce and the transportation of goods and resources.
FILE-Exhibition of Tesla Model X during the Turin Motor Show 2018. (Stefano Guidi/LightRocket via Getty Images)
Legislators are concerned that infrastructure is not in place to support President Biden’s ambitious goal to phase out gas vehicles and have half of all new vehicles sold in 2030 to be zero-emissions vehicles.
Charging stations would need to be installed across the long stretches of highway across Wyoming, while efforts to supply electricity to those stations would need to be ramped up.
The legislators also raised concerns that unemployment will rise as fossil fuel production decreases because of EVs.
Anderson did not immediately respond to inquiries seeking additional information about the proposed legislation.
A charging Chevrolet Bolt EV is seen at the New York International Auto Show at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center on April 15, 2022 in New York City. (Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)
The bill states that the domestic supply of the minerals used in the EV batteries are limited in the country and they are not easily recyclable or disposable.
Even if or when EVs dominate the roadways, the legislators claim fossil fuels will continue to be vital for transporting people and goods across the country and Wyoming.
"Phasing out the sale of new electric vehicles in Wyoming by 2035 will ensure the stability of Wyoming’s oil and gas industry and will help preserve the country’s critical minerals for vital purposes," the bill reads.