Washington, D.C.—In response to the White House announcing its intention to eliminate the federal electric vehicle (EV) tax credit in its proposed budget, in order to save the U.S. government $2.5 billion over 10 years, Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE) President and CEO Robbie Diamond issued the following statement:
“Eliminating the federal EV tax credit not only exacerbates the economic and national security dangers posed by our oil dependence, but also gives China a vital advantage in the global EV race. Electricity is a bona fide American-made fuel, and switching to electricity will help the Trump administration hit its energy dominance goals by cutting domestic oil consumption and maximizing our petroleum exports.”
The United States is in a race with China to dominate the next century of transportation. We cannot let China dominate the industry by monopolizing the supply chain, protecting its domestic market, and engaging in economic espionage for electric vehicles. Supporting the domestic industry—by retaining the most prominent incentive for consumer adoption—will maintain American global competitiveness.
Accounting for one-fifth of daily global supply, the United States is the world’s largest oil consumer—70 percent of which is used to power a transport system that is 92 percent dependent on oil. Even as the United States reaches historic highs in oil production, the uniquely global nature of oil pricing—in which a disruption in supply anywhere affects prices everywhere—means the United States will always be exposed to oil price volatility, regardless of how much oil we produce. EVs represent one of America’s best opportunities to enhance U.S. energy security, by decoupling our transportation network from oil price volatility.
“Getting rid of the federal EV tax credit to save $2.5 billion is penny wise and pound foolish: The U.S. military spends at least $81 billion every year on policing global oil supply lines, and U.S. consumers and businesses will realize significant savings by switching from gasoline to electricity. While gasoline prices have varied wildly from almost $4 per gallon in 2009 to around $2.50 today, electricity has stayed constantly at a price equivalent to approximately $1 per gallon,” Diamond added.
The cost to fuel an EV is approximately half that of its conventional gasoline counterpart—generating meaningful savings for American households and businesses. EVs also benefit the broader U.S. economy and federal budget: Between 1970 and 2015 alone, $3.4 trillion was transferred from the United States to foreign oil producers simply to account for oil price inflation by OPEC.
About Securing America’s Future Energy
Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE) is an action-oriented, nonpartisan organization that aims to reduce America’s dependence on oil. Near-total dependence on petroleum in the transportation sector undermines the nation’s economic and national security, and constrains U.S. foreign policy. To combat these threats, SAFE advocates for expanded domestic production of U.S. oil and gas resources, continued improvements in vehicle fuel efficiency, and transportation sector innovations including electric vehicles, natural gas trucks, and autonomous vehicles. In 2006, SAFE joined with General P.X. Kelley (Ret.), 28th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps, and Frederick W. Smith, Chairman, President, and CEO of FedEx Corporation, to form the Energy Security Leadership Council (ESLC), a group of business and former military leaders committed to reducing the United States’ dependence on oil. Today, the ESLC is co-chaired by Frederick W. Smith and General James T. Conway (Ret), 34th Commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps.
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