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No Need to Mandate U.S. EV Sales in These Three States

While you might think that mandates are necessary to drive zero-emission vehicle adoption, the results from three U.S. states fly in the face of that contention.

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Mandates and tax benefits may have been an important part of driving EV sales, but three of the top five states on the list of early adopters have no requirements at all, at least according to recently released government data.

Nationally, President Biden just announced a target of 50% EV sales by 2030, but he says that is just a target and not a requirement from regulators. Strict emissions on the horizon may force automakers in the U.S. to add more EV offerings.

The Department of Energy Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) says that the top five states for EVs are California, Florida, Texas, Washington and New York, but the surprise revealed by that data is that Florida, Texas, and Washington have no zero-emission vehicle mandates.

California led the way in mandating the adoption of electric cars, and that’s hardly a surprise and the state with the largest economy is currently positioned to finish 2021 selling one of every 10 new vehicle sales in the EV category. In fact, California hopes to eliminate the sale of most new vehicles with combustion engines by the year 2035.

But in the last few years, Texas has gone from nearly invisible when it comes to EV registration data to now cracking the top five. And Texas won’t even allow Tesla and other EV manufacturers to sell cars direct to consumers in their state. While incentives have been offered, it seems a ‘hands-off’ policy is working well. It may come down to the fact that Texas is notoriously unwilling to press regulation on the vehicle makers and it allows utility companies to build and operate charging stations on a for-profit basis

It doesn’t hurt their cause that Texas happens to be one of the largest U.S. new-car markets in the nation.

And though the state of Washington wasn’t requiring electric vehicles in the mix until recently, lawmakers are considering more ambitious 2030 targets for light-vehicle EV sales which would pave the way for the state to adopt rules closely following those in place in California.

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