Biden lays out 52% US emissions reduction goal by 2030

Prior to the announcement, Ford and GM joined hundreds of other businesses calling for the ambitious cuts.

Sean Szymkowski
It all started with Gran Turismo. From those early PlayStation days, Sean was drawn to anything with four wheels. Prior to joining the Roadshow team, he was a freelance contributor for Motor Authority, The Car Connection and Green Car Reports. As for what's in the garage, Sean owns a 2016 Chevrolet SS, and yes, it has Holden badges.
Sean Szymkowski
2 min read
President Joe Biden

Automakers calling for emissions reductions is a big deal.

Bloomberg/Getty Images

General Motors and Ford joined over 400 businesses on Wednesday calling on President Joe Biden to set an ambitious emissions target for the US ahead of a planned climate summit. Ahead of the summit's start on Thursday, the White House made the president's goal official: 52% emissions reductions by 2030 below 2005 levels.

The letter, whose signatories account for more than $4 trillion in annual revenue, urged Biden to cut the country's emissions by "at least 50%" below 2005 levels come 2030. The final figure goes slightly above the businesses' calls. GM and Ford's signing on is, frankly, a huge deal considering tailpipe emissions are a sizable contributing factor to climate change.

As the US works to reduce emissions by 50%, the companies signaled Biden should also put the country on a path toward carbon neutrality by 2050. "To restore the standing of the US as a global leader, we need to address the climate crisis at the pace and scale it demands," the open letter states. "Specifically, the US must adopt an emissions reduction target that will place the country on a credible pathway to reach net-zero emissions by 2050."

In the White House's announcement, the administration said it will continue to pursue a pathway to create a carbon-free power sector no later than 2035, and a net-zero emissions economy by 2050. The work will take place across numerous sectors of the economy, though the supplied fact sheet did not provide specific goals. They'll come in due time, and the automotive sector ranks high on the list. The Biden administration is deep in creating new emissions and fuel economy regulations for the auto sector, which will show up by July. Both Ford and GM have also approved of the Biden administration's review for more stringent fuel economy and emissions standards. The president's infrastructure plan also goes heavy on zero-emissions vehicles and hopes to spur battery production, material refinement and EV sales in the US to counter China.

As stated in January, GM plans to sell only zero-emission vehicles by 2035; Ford pledged in February to sell only electric cars in Europe by 2030. Numerous automakers have taken a heavy turn toward electrification, with similar aspirations.

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