Gina McCarthy: Electric Vehicles Will Be Cheaper ‘When More Are Sold’ – We Have to Help with Rebates or Tax Incentives

During a town hall on CNN on Friday, White House National Climate Adviser Gina McCarthy said that electric vehicles will become cheaper “when more are sold” and that we have to help consumers with either direct rebates or tax incentives.

McCarthy said, “The American Jobs Plan and the work that we’re doing to address our greenhouse gas emissions are really going to speak to this very issue. Because it’s not about sacrifice. It is about working with our manufacturing sector to revise it — to revive it. It’s about actually building batteries in the U.S. so the cost goes down. It’s us taking back the supply chains that we’ve lost to other countries. And it is about putting people back to work in good union jobs. There is a legitimate issue of electric vehicles that they’re not accessible to everybody. That will change over time.”

Moderator Dana Bash then cut in to ask, “When will that happen?”

McCarthy responded, “One of the ways in which we’re looking at this is to work with the car manufacturers. We didn’t choose electric vehicles. They came to us, and said, you know what, electric vehicles are the future. But they’re producing them in China, not here. And so, we need to reinvigorate our manufacturing sector. We have two battery manufacturing companies that are starting up, one to serve GM and one to serve Ford, right in the United States. We’re actually proposing to do a lot of consumer rebates, we’re proposing to look at tax rebates, things to lower the cost.”

Bash then cut in to ask, “When are they going to be cheaper?”

McCarthy answered, “Well, when more are sold. Which, there are more sold now than there have ever been before. And they’re catching up. But we do have to help consumers out by lowering that cost, either through a direct rebate or through a tax incentive. But we think that that is the future, the companies themselves are saying we’re likely to be actually producing 100% of our vehicles by 2035. But we’re not going to ask people to make abrupt changes. We are asking people to actually look at the technologies of today, we’ll advance them, we’ll deploy them, we’ll start getting them cheaper by investing in manufacturing and getting those jobs back here in the United States. And at some point in time, those — and it should be very soon because the sales are starting to go up, you will see the companies actually catering to all consumers and we’ll be able to make this happen.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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