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Groups urge lawmakers to prioritize electric transportation in 2021 General Assembly

electric vehicle
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Representatives of 33 organizations, businesses and nonprofits have come together to urge Virginia lawmakers to support legislation in the 2021 General Assembly that would help accelerate the transition to electric transportation.

In a letter to Virginia lawmakers, authors point to the urgency of transitioning to clean energy and major benefits for Virginia’s economy, energy independence, public health, and environment among the reasons for enacting key legislation this year.

The letter was coordinated by nonprofits Generation180 and the Chesapeake Climate Action Network and signed by business, climate, equity, and transportation groups.

Transportation is the largest source of carbon emissions in Virginia. Since electric vehicles (EVs) create little to zero tailpipe emissions, letter authors say policies that make it easier for people to purchase them are needed.

Pro-EV bills to be proposed in the 2021 Virginia General Assembly include:

  • The Advanced Clean Cars Program Vehicles standards, which would make Virginia a Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) state and require auto manufacturers to send EVs to Virginia new-car dealerships.
  • An equitable “point of sale” rebate that would lower the purchase price for new and used electric vehicles, including an additional incentive for low- to moderate- income Virginians.

According to a recent report from clean energy nonprofit Generation180, 53 percent of Virginians said they were likely or very likely to consider an EV for their next car.

The report also finds that low inventory in Virginia is a barrier.

“While many other states have taken steps to support a robust EV market, Virginia has yet to do so. The upcoming 2021 General Assembly session presents a critical window of opportunity to advance the benefits of transportation electrification in Virginia,” say letter authors.

Read the letter sent to Virginia policymakers on supporting transportation electrification legislation here.

augusta free press
augusta free press