E-testimony to the House Transportation Committee about Clean Cars 2030 (HB 1204)

E-testimony that I sent 8 Feb. 2021 to the House Transportation Committee (Reps. Jake Fey, Sharon Wylie, Dan Bronoske, and Rill Ramos urging a yes vote on HB 1204 (Clean Cars 2030).

Dear Representatives,

Moving Washington rapidly toward electric cars and light trucks, electric chargers all around, a strong electrical grid, and creating the many jobs such a move would entail would markedly cut Washington’s greenhouse gas emissions and be a strong and constructive step towards our state accomplishing and leading in the energy transformation that scientists say is needed in this climate crisis (see Chris Mooney and Brady Dennis, “The world has just over a decade to get climate change under control, U.N. scientists say,” Washington Post, 7 Oct. 2018, Web, One Decade to Control Climate Change; see John Branch and Brad Plumer, “Climate Disruption Is Now Locked In. The Next Moves Will Be Crucial,” The New York Times, 22 Sep. 2020, Web, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/22/climate/climate-change-future.html).

Not surprisingly, fossil-fuel companies are trying to kill the bill in committee, but that should not be allowed to happen. Climate control measures like this really are now about our future and  whether it will be just challenging or—if we don’t address the climate crisis during these remaining nine years—that future is chaotic and dangerous.

I attended the Naval War College in 2006 and 2007. At that time, the U.S. Navy was strategizing what would be the Navy’s role when the Arctic became ice free in the summer of 2040, since a new ocean would have opened up and at least five nations would be competing for its resources. It’s tough to watch the predicted climate changes evolve pretty much as predicted, and yet the world’s greenhouse gas emissions keep going relentlessly up, as do the parts per million of CO2. We’re challenged by the world’s scientists to keep global warming at 1.5°C (knowing that 1.5°C has dramatic changes that will occur and that are occurring). And yet, we remain on course for 3°C—with its terrible consequences.

You are the captain of this ship at this time in history; please change the course. We need to transform how we Washingtonians (and by our example and influence, others) use energy.

Please hold an executive session and vote yes on HB 1204.

Michael Maddox
Poulsbo, WA

E-testimony that I sent on 28 Jan. 2021 to the Washington State House of Representatives, Transportation Committee regarding HB 1204 (Clean Cars 2030) for their meeting on 1 Feb. 2021.

When I first read that there was a bill requiring that all new cars registered in Washington State from 2030 onward be electric, I thought, “Well, that won’t pass.”

Then I read the details at https://www.coltura.org/washington-clean-cars, which explained the feasibility and the necessity of new cars being electric, and about the wisdom of us having an efficient electrical grid in Washington, and how going this course will cut greenhouse gases (transportation is the largest source of GHGs in Washington), lower costs for people (the new electric vehicles are on par with, or cheaper than, fossil-fuel cars—when all costs, such as maintenance, are accounted for), and add jobs (as we build the new renewable-fuels world). Under this bill, people can keep their old gas cars, but new cars from 2030 onward would be electric.

I’ve since learned that many countries have decided to phase out gas cars, that China wants to capture the electric car market, and that most of the cars made by General Motors will be electric in the year 2035 (GM made that announcement today). The future is electric, and one day (hopefully soon) electric cars will be routine.

I now think that Clean Cars 2030 is not only workable, but—given its benefits and the huge climate strides we have to make—it’s also necessary.

We’re in a climate crisis because of greenhouse gas emissions. The faster we move to electric cars and get charging stations all around, the better. HB 1204 will signal clearly where we are going and what processes will be supported. Our businesses and manufacturers, and our city and state planners, will respond to that course setting with action and production.

Michael Maddox

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