The Biden administration contacted electric car manufacturer Tesla, requesting help with formulating a new policy that would allow electric vehicles to receive benefits from the nation’s renewable fuel subsidies program.
When President Joe Biden took office in January 2021, Dallas Burkholder of the Environment Protection Agency had emailed Tesla lobbyist Rohan Patel, requesting a meeting, documents Reuters reviewed revealed.
The meeting’s purpose was to discuss ways the government can incorporate electric automobile manufacturers into the Renewable Fuel Standard program.
Since then, the EPA, under the Biden administration, had set up more meetings with Tesla, groups representing the biogas manufacturing industry and charging station companies, the documents said, according to Reuters.
The biogas manufacturing companies that the EPA consulted include Waste Management Inc. and Republic Services Inc., while the charging station companies include ChargePoint Holdings Inc.
To discuss the new policies, the EPA also met with White House staffers, including White House National Climate Advisor Ali Zaidi.
Congress authorized RFS under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 and expanded it under the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007.
The program mandated that locally-sold transportation fuel should have a minimum volume of renewable fuels, such as corn-based ethanol, which has received subsidies as part of the program.
As the Biden administration pushes for the widespread use of electric automobiles in the country, the EPA is set to announce a new set of changes that would alter the winner-loser makeup in the market for the program’s compliance credits (known as RINs).
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The changes are intended to allow electric carmakers to benefit from RFS. According to Reuters, the proposed policies would cover not only electric manufacturers but also related industries like car charging companies and landfills that supply biogas.
Some of the proposed mechanisms the Biden administration could introduce to accommodate these industries include e-RINs, or electric RINs, according to Reuters.
Neither Tesla nor the EPA responded to The Western Journal’s request for comments.
News of the cooperation between the Biden administration and Tesla comes amid a feud between Biden and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
The most recent episode of the feud came when Musk suggested two weeks ago that the U.S. could see a recession, and Biden responded by mocking Musk’s space ventures.
“While Elon Musk is talking about that, Ford is increasing their investment overwhelmingly,” Biden said of Musk’s comments, Insider reported.
“I think Ford is increasing the investment in building new electric vehicles, 6,000 new employees — union employees, I might add — in the Midwest,” Biden said, according to the Insider. “So, you know, lots of luck on his trip to the moon.”