A handful of Republican lawmakers in Wyoming aren’t convinced that the destruction of a key job-producing industry in their state is inevitable. Either way, they’ll be sure to go down fighting on the side of Wyoming’s oil and gas workers.
Republican Sens. Jim Anderson, Brian Boner, Ed Cooper, and Dan Dockstader and Reps. Donald Burkhart and Bill Henderson have sponsored a joint resolution to this effect.
The bill’s sponsors said he was inspired to protest California’s ban on gas-powered vehicles, and that the proposal is not binding, but simply discourages electric vehicle purchases.
Cowboy State Daily reports that a resolution is currently being debated in the Wyoming Legislature designed to phase out the sale of new electric vehicles (EVs) in the state by 2035.
Sen. Anderson claims that the proposal’s goal is to oppose state restrictions on the sale of new cars with internal combustion engines, such as those in California and New York. He claimed that the legislature would declare, “if you don’t like our gasoline-powered cars, then we don’t like your electric cars.”
The resolution emphasizes the value of oil and gas production to Wyoming, calling it one of the state’s “proud and valued industries” that has contributed significantly to the state’s economy over the years by creating “countless jobs” and income. In fact, it provides over 68,000 jobs and about 100 companies operate the state’s 30,000 miles of pipelines.
It also acknowledges that gas-powered vehicles help the state’s businesses and industries move products and materials across the country.
“The proliferation of electric vehicles at the expense of gas-powered vehicles will have deleterious impacts on Wyoming’s communities and will be detrimental to Wyoming’s economy and the ability for the country to efficiently engage in commerce,” the bill says.
In the bill, the GOP lawmakers wrote, “The critical minerals used in electric batteries are not easily recyclable or disposable, meaning that landfills in Wyoming and elsewhere will be required to develop practices to dispose of these minerals in a safe and responsible manner.”
A 2021 study by the International Energy Agency found that electric vehicles require six times more minerals than gas-powered cars. These critical minerals include copper, lithium, nickel, cobalt, graphite, and zinc.
The resolution also says that the creation of new power charging stations would require a major amount of new power to “sustain the misadventure of electric vehicles.”