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Biden pledges to replace U.S. government fleet with electric vehicles

February 5, 2021
President Joe Biden has vowed to replace the U.S. government’s fleet of roughly 650,000 vehicles with electric models, as the new administration shifts its focus toward clean-energy.
"The federal government also owns an enormous fleet of vehicles, which we’re going to replace with clean electric vehicles made right here in America made by American workers," Biden said Jan. 25.
Biden criticized existing rules that allow vehicles to be considered U.S.-made when purchased by the U.S. government even if the vehicles have significant non-American made components.
Biden said he would close "loopholes" that allow key parts such as engines, steel and glass to be manufactured abroad for vehicles considered U.S. made.
The White House did not immediately answer questions about over what period Biden planned to replace current vehicles. It could cost the U.S. $20 billion or more to replace the fleet.
Biden’s "Buy America" executive order, signed Jan. 25, does not direct the purchase of electric vehicles.
As of 2019, the U.S. government owned 645,000 vehicles that were driven 4.5 billion miles consuming 375 million gallons of gasoline and diesel fuel, according to the General Services Administration. The GSA said the U.S. government spent $4.4 billion on federal vehicle costs in 2019.
Of U.S.-government vehicles, just 3,215 were electric vehicles as of July 2020, the GSA said.
During the campaign, Biden vowed to "make a major federal commitment to purchase clean vehicles for federal, state, tribal, postal, and local fleets."
He also vowed to create 1 million new jobs in the "American auto industry, domestic auto supply chains, and auto infrastructure, from parts to materials to electric vehicle charging stations."
Biden backs new consumer rebates to replace old, less-efficient vehicles with newer electric vehicles and incentives for manufacturers to build or retool factories to assemble EVs and parts.
The new president has vowed to build 550,000 EV charging stations and spend more in clean energy research.
 
 

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