The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Trump Wants to Cut Subsidies for Electric Cars, Renewables
Government subsidies for electric vehicles and solar panels are an important tool to help accelerate a clean energy economy. However, a top White House economic advisor said on Monday that the Trump administration is looking to end such federal incentives, Reuters reported.
Sweeteners for purchasing EVs and other Obama-era items could be eliminated in as little as two years, according to Larry Kudlow, the director of the White House National Economic Council.
"As a matter of our policy, we want to end all of those subsidies," Kudlow said, as quoted by Reuters. "And by the way, other subsidies that were imposed during the Obama administration, we are ending, whether it's for renewables and so forth."
Kudlow blamed General Motors' recent plant closures and layoffs as the catalyst behind the decision. His comments echoed President Donald Trump's tweet last week that threatened to cut all subsidies for GM, including ones for electric vehicles, in order to punish the automaker.
When asked for a timeline, Kudlow added: "It's just all going to end in the near future. I don't know whether it will end in 2020 or 2021."
The federal government currently offers $7,500 in tax credits for purchases of new electric vehicles under a 2009 federal law. Congress caps the tax credits at 200,000 vehicles per manufacturer. After hitting that mark, the credit phases out.
The only U.S. carmaker to hit this threshold is Elon Musk's Tesla, although GM is said to be close to losing this credit. This means the timeline suggested by Kudlow wouldn't really hurt GM since their tax credits could soon phase out anyway, as Electrek pointed out. However, it would punish other EV-makers and its customers if the proposal comes to fruition.
Kudlow did not provide exact details on how the White House would eliminate the tax credits, as it would require an act of Congress. It's also unlikely to happen after Democrats—many of whom are pushing for additional clean energy incentives—take control of the House in January.
However, federal subsidies for the renewable energy sector have declined significantly from about $15.5 billion in 2013 to $6.7 billion in 2016, according an April analysis by the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
- Trump auto, steel tariffs threaten GM, Fiat Chrysler, Ford Motor ›
- Trump's tariffs, trade war causing layoffs, losses for US business ... ›
- Kudlow Comments On Trump's Threats To Pull Electric Car ... ›
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Tia Schwab
It has been almost a year since Hurricane Florence slammed the Carolinas, dumping a record 30 inches of rainfall in some parts of the states. At least 52 people died, and property and economic losses reached $24 billion, with nearly $17 billion in North Carolina alone. Flood waters also killed an estimated 3.5 million chickens and 5,500 hogs.
'Huge Victory' for Grassroots Climate Campaigners as NY Lawmakers Reach Deal on Sweeping Climate Legislation
By Julia Conley
Grassroots climate campaigners in New York applauded on Monday after state lawmakers reached a deal on sweeping climate legislation, paving the way for the passage of what could be some of the country's most ambitious environmental reforms.
Tens of Thousands Flee Extreme Heatwave in India as Temperatures Topping 120°F Kill Dozens Across Country
By Julia Conley
Nearly 50 people died on Saturday in one Indian state as record-breaking heatwaves across the country have caused an increasingly desperate situation.
By Will J. Grant
In an ideal world, people would look at issues with a clear focus only on the facts. But in the real world, we know that doesn't happen often.
People often look at issues through the prism of their own particular political identity — and have probably always done so.
Spaghetti with plastic sauce? That's what you might be eating if you pour one of three flavors of Ragú sauce over your pasta.
Mizkan America, the food company that owns Ragú, announced Saturday that it was voluntarily recalling some Chunky Tomato Garlic & Onion, Old World Style Traditional and Old World Style Meat sauces because they might be contaminated with plastic fragments, The Today Show reported.
by Jordan Davidson
Taking action to stop the mercury from rising is a matter of life and death in the U.S., according to a new study published in the journal Science Advances.