Sen. King statement on Inslee’s call to ban new gas-powered vehicles by 2035

Sen. Curtis King, ranking Republican on the Senate Transportation Committee and R-Yakima, issued this statement following Gov. Jay Inslee’s announcement last week that he will impose a rule banning the sale of new gas-powered vehicles by 2035, meaning that only new all-electric or hydrogen-powered vehicles can be sold in Washington by that year.

“Governor Inslee’s gas-powered vehicle prohibition will hurt Washingtonians, especially those who can least afford it. Electric vehicles are more expensive – and that will not change by 2035.

“I do not support bans like this one – we do not know if the benefits will be greater than the expense. There is still much to learn about the long-term environmental impacts of many aspects of electric vehicles. We must look at EV manufacturing, required infrastructure, road impacts and battery disposal options before forcing every Washingtonian to drive an electric vehicle. I do support incentivizing hybrid vehicles, along with funding research of emerging technologies, such as hydrogen fuel cell energy.

“Our highest priority should be to ensure the stability of our state’s electrical grid. If all cars were all electric and we do all the other things our governor suggests, like breaching our dams and abolishing natural gas, we will not have enough electrical power.

“Washington state is fortunate to be able to reduce our carbon footprint with immense working forests and clean hydropower. This is an exciting time to utilize our natural resources, make reasonable decisions, and plan responsibly for the future. Our citizens deserve thoughtful solutions that are Washington-based and utilize the unique features of our great state. We don’t need harsh and unreasonable mandates.”

King serves the 14th Legislative District.