Electric Vehicle Mandate Slated for March Hearing as Mills Touts EV Charger Investments

By Libby Palanza

February 5, 2024

Nearly six months after the Maine Board of Environmental Protection (BEP) held its first public hearing on the proposed California-style vehicle emissions standards, a second opportunity for public comment is set to come to a close on Monday, February 5.

The controversial policy will advance through the rulemaking process on the heels of a “State of the State” speech in which Gov. Janet Mills touted taxpayer-funded investments in Electric Vehicles (EVs) as a key tool in her fight to lower the planet’s temperatures.

According to a BEP spokesperson, the rule will once again receive a public hearing in March.

Last year, a citizen petition initiated by the Natural Resources Council of Maine (NRCM) was submitted to Maine BEP asking for “the requirements of the California Advanced Clean Cars II” to be incorporated into Maine’s existing regulatory code.

Although only 150 people Maine residents signed the petition, it nonetheless set in motion a bureaucratic process that may allow the Mills Administration to impose sweeping controls on what kinds of vehicles can be sold in Maine — all without the approval of Maine’s elected lawmakers.

Adoption of these new regulations would essentially result in the state phasing out the sale of traditional gas-powered cars and trucks in favor of EVs over the course of the next few years.

In the current form, this mandate would require that 51 percent of new car sales in Maine be comprised of EVs by model year 2028 and 82 percent by model year 2032. The rule would force auto dealers to forgo sales on gas-powered vehicles unless sales for EVs increased substantially over the level of demand seen in recent years.

[RELATED: Maine Considering California-style Rules to Limit Sales of Gas-Powe...]

While those in support of the mandate have pointed out the alleged environmental benefits associated with a transition toward EVs such as improved air quality, opponents of the rule emphasize the practical challenges associated with a rapid and artificial increase in EV usage, particularly in Maine’s cold and largely rural landscape.

Opponents have also pointed out that arguments in favor of EVs’ environmental benefits typically ignore that the electricity that charges their batteries often derives from fossil fuels, while the manufacturing process required to make the batteries is hardly friendly to the environment — or human rights.

Charging an EV in Maine, for example, still relies mostly on natural gas imported from New Brunswick. According to ISO New England, the nonprofit that manages New England’s power grid, Maine’s reliance on natural gas also surges during the evening and at night, meaning the peak EV charging periods will be heavily reliant on CO2-producing natural gas.

Most EVs use massive lithium-ion batteries that require — in addition to lithium — cobalt, a large share of which is mined by child laborers in the Democratic Republic of Congo, according to a report from Amnesty International.

Closer to home, Republican policymakers, auto dealers, and activists have also taken issue with the rulemaking process itself.

Please continue reading at https://www.themainewire.com/2024/02/electric-vehicle-mandate-slate...


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Comment by Willem Post on February 7, 2024 at 5:51pm

Two very expensive New Jersey Offshore wind projects, mostly supplied by European companies.
The turbines will be made in Europe, shipped by specialized European ships, elected by Europeans. 
New Jersey folks will be soooo lucky to get to do some of the maintenance, with mostly European replacement parts.
One project for 2400 MW to be completed in 2031/2032, FIRST YEAR cost $112.50/MWh, escalating at ?% for 20 years
The second project at 1342 MW, no completion date, FIRST YEAR cost $131.00/MWh, escalating at ?% for 20 years
The escalations are the NJ economy killers, which nitwit Murphy and co-conspirators are perpetrating 
If anyone has escalation %, please let me know


Here are some prices with no escalation
New York State had signed contracts with EU big wind companies for four offshore wind projects
Sometime later, the companies were trying to coerce an additional $25.35 billion (per Wind Watch) from New York ratepayers and taxpayers over at least 20 years, because they had bid at lower prices than they should have.
New York State denied the request on October 12, 2023; “a deal is a deal”, said the Commissioner 

Owners want a return on investment of at least 10%/y, if bank loans for risky projects are 6.5%/y, and project cost inflation and uncertainties are high 
The about 3.5% is a minimum for all the years of hassles of designing, building, erecting, and paperwork of a project
The project prices, with no subsidies, would be about two times the agreed contract price, paid by Utilities to owners.
The reduction is due to US subsidies provided, per various US laws
All contractors had bid too low. When they realized there would be huge losses, they asked for higher contract prices.
It looks like the contract prices will need to be at least $150/MWh, for contractors to make money. Those contract prices would be at least 60% higher than in 2021
Oersted, Denmark, Sunrise wind, contract price $110.37/MWh, contractor needs $139.99/MWh, a 27% increase
Equinor, Norway, Empire 1 wind, contract price $118.38/MWh, contractor needs $159.64/MWh, a 35% increase
Equinor, Norway, Empire 2 wind, contract price $107.50/MWh, contractor needs $177.84/MWh, a 66% increase
Equinor, Norway, Beacon Wind, contract price $118.00/MWh, contractor needs $190.82/MWh, a 62% increase
NOTE: Empire Wind 2, 1260 MW, near Long- Island, was cancelled.
NOTE: The above prices compare with the average New England wholesale price of about 5 c/kWh, during the 2009 – 2022 period, 13 years, courtesy of:
Gas-fueled CCGT plants, with low-cost, low-CO2, very-low particulate/kWh
Nuclear plants, with low-cost, near-zero CO2, zero particulate/kWh
Hydro plants, with low-cost, near-zero-CO2, zero particulate/kWh

Comment by Willem Post on February 6, 2024 at 9:57am

Mills is a mouthpiece of environmental groups

Has no mind of her own

Does not know or care EVs only useful in urban areas

Does not know or care EVs totally useless in old climates, same as heat pumps; I have 3 of them already for 4 years a 22500 investment yields me $200/y in ENERGY COST SAVINGS, but the15-y amortization at 5%/y is costing me $2000/y HEAT PUMPS ARE MONEY LOSERS, THE SAME AS EVs


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."


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