Americans Are No Longer Plugged in to EVs

Haley Bickelhaupt

Jul 02, 2024  |  Today's News |  ICGA |  Ethanol |  Legislation & Regulation |  Farm Policy

Polls show Americans are losing interest in electric vehicles despite aggressive pushes by the Biden administration to electrify transportation.


A Pew Research Center study released last week reported only 29% of Americans are interested in buying an electric vehicle- a 9% drop from 38% in 2023. Cost, electricity range in regard to chargers, and charging time are the driver’s top three concerns when considering an EV reports Politico’s Energywire.


Driving the electric vehicle agenda is the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) multipollutant rule, requiring 69% of light duty vehicles be electric or hybrid electric by 2032. However, Pew’s research reported 58% of those polled opposed rules pressuring Americans to buy EVs in the allotted time.


“The research reaffirms the point we have been making,” IL Corn Growers Association (ICGA) President Dave Rylander said. “The United States does not have the consumer interest, infrastructure, or economic reality to support a surge in electric vehicle sales. The EPA’s plan has many loopholes. However, ethanol and biofuels are a solution we can use immediately to decarbonize our transportation sector and lower emissions.”


Across the United States, ethanol is added to at least 10% of most baseline fuel. A renewable resource, ethanol lowers greenhouse gas emissions by 40% compared to gasoline. Products such as E15 and E85 offer Americans significant cost cuts. The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) reports during the 2022 driving season, drivers saved at least 25 cents per gallon on E15.


Additionally, access to charging stations and grid power is a concern of many rural Americans. The University of Chicago’s Energy Policy Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research reported two-thirds of Americans do not know the closest public charging station. In May, Pew reported only 17% of rural Americans live less than a mile from a charging station opposed to 60% in urban areas. As of February, urban areas account for almost 90% of charging ports in the United States.


“Let’s meet Americans where they are and bring biofuels into the GHG reduction conversation,” Rylander said. “We have a problem and a realistic solution to fix it.”