Anybody who has been involved in the political arena for a period of time knows that when things are going badly for a politician one of the tried and true strategies is change the conversation. That is exactly what happened when Governor Gavin Newsom’s announced that Californians will all be driving electric cars by 2035.
The state of California has recently had massive fires that have been nothing but bad news for the Governor. If you combine that with the fact California has nationally high unemployment due to his COVID policies, a homeless problem that has not been mitigated, electricity blackouts and brownouts, a malfunctioning unemployment system and people streaming out of the state, the Governor is facing major problems.
Start with the fires. First, this problem was handed to him by his predecessor who spent government funds on illusional projects while not doing the basics necessary to maintain the forests. As large as the fires have been, they are smaller than many historically going back to the 1800’s. Regardless, they certainly look bad.
Instead of him saying he is in charge and will fix this, he has pointed fingers at others. Last year it was PG&E — the energy company was responsible. This company was forced to spend all its capital on mandated “clean energy” projects forcing it to neglect updating old power lines that needed to be fixed for energy and fire safety. Now the villain is the federal government which owns most of the forested lands. The problem is his Attorney General, Xavier Becerra, last year joined into a lawsuit against the federal government to prevent them from clearing those lands. This lawsuit (against updating the National Environmental Policy Act) has stymied efforts to move forward at the federal level. He could call his AG and tell him to stop it. Newsom could also call his friends at the Sierra Club and National Resource Defense Council and tell them to lay off, but he has not done either. And as always he blamed climate change.
To cure his ills and rally his base Newsom issued a legally questionable Executive Order (EO) to demand that all cars sold in California by 2035 are electric vehicles. Do not think that the date is 2035. If this stated “goal” (yes; it just requires the California Air Resources Board to work toward the goal) proceeds, no one in their right mind unless they are planning on relocating from the state (about 50% of the residents these days) would buy a gas-operated vehicle after 2030. The ability to buy gasoline will soon diminish and make gasoline-operated vehicles near useless even though they will still have many years of remaining life. The resale market in California will completely disappear.
Here are some fun facts: 1) There are over 17 million cars in California. 2) About 5% are electric cars 3) Hybrid cars (about 8% of the market) will likewise have to go. Say goodbye to your Prius. 4) In 2018 there were a little over 5 million electric vehicles worldwide in use in the world and 1.1 million in the U.S.
With eight years as the average lifespan of a vehicle, you would really have to start buying electric cars in 2027 to be assured of meeting the 2035 goal. Certainly, you can put in a charging station at your home, but is that a problem for apartment renters? And will there be adequate charging stations state-wide in seven short years if you are away from home?
It can take anywhere from 30 minutes to 12 hours to charge an electric car. I understand Porsche has come out with an electric vehicle with a much shorter period of total charge — less than 30 minutes for a full charge. Then again it comes with a Porsche price tag. Their stripped-down price tag exceeds $100,000.
Then there is supplying the energy that does not now exist. Yes, there is plenty of energy, but it largely shuts down at 6 pm because it is from solar. There is currently inadequate or ineffective technology to save the energy generated by solar. By 2035, they are hoping to have even more energy generated by solar or wind which have proven to be unreliable without the science to retain the produced energy. Adding a significant additional draw (cars) on that energy will worsen the situation.
Since the Democrats are always into subsidizing someone who is disenfranchised by their plans, one must wonder if they are going to compensate all the gas station owners who are going to lose their investments from this policy. Most of those owners are small business people who support their families from these businesses and their employees. We can hope that proposal will be coming.
Newsom, it appears, is trying to force the market — a market not created by consumer choice but rather by government dictate. He believes technology will be created that does not exist and has no scientific basis. Since he thinks that the government of California will be in the hands of Democrats for the next 15 years he believes he can make this pronouncement. By the way, that did not work out so well for former Governor Brown and his expensive choo-choo train.
If you think Mr. Newsom issued an actionable EO it is because you have only read MSM sources. If you ever doubted the low level of today’s journalism as displayed by operations like the Los Angeles Times, read their significant mischaracterization of the governor’s statement. The EO is only a goal.
To review, Governor Newsom has demanded that we replace our cars beginning in seven years for vehicles which are either inadequately produced and/or are cost prohibitive. There are inadequate energy supply sources outside of your home and they will require excessive time to recharge your vehicle. All of this is to deflect from the failings of him and his political allies to prevent forest fires.
Yes, this is a massive head fake that will cost us all and drive even more residents to leave.