Michigan Gov. Forces Zero-Emission State Vehicles
Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer took another major step towards her vision of a clean and sustainable future on Tuesday, as she signed an executive directive that requires all state-owned vehicles to transition to zero-emission technology. This move, which received widespread support from environmental groups, labor unions, and industry leaders, is expected to bring significant environmental and economic benefits to the state.
Under this new directive, all light-duty vehicles in the state government's fleet will have to be converted to zero-emission vehicles by 2033, and all medium and heavy-duty vehicles by 2040. Governor Whitmer stated that this decision was a testament to Michigan's commitment to leading the way in the transition to cleaner energy sources. "Michigan automakers are on the cutting-edge of the world’s switch to zero-emission vehicles, and with today’s executive directive to transition our state-owned fleet by 2040, the State of Michigan is leading by example," she said.
The governor also emphasized the positive impact this move would have on the state's economy, citing the potential for increased demand and production of electric vehicles in Michigan. "Getting this done will help drive demand of Michigan-made electric vehicles, lower gas and maintenance costs for the state, and reduce air and noise pollution in our communities," she added.
Michigan Gov Whitmer orders government fleet to be 100% electric/ hahahahahahahahha Michigan is toast! Good luck in the winter state workers https://t.co/x0cn3hGvj9
— RHollist (@RobertHollist7) December 5, 2023
The executive directive outlines a clear plan for the transition, including prioritizing the purchase of new zero-emission vehicles, converting the vehicles that travel the most miles first, and installing EV charging infrastructure in high-density areas. It also requires the state to prioritize transitioning the vehicles in communities that have been disproportionately affected by pollution.
The United Auto Workers (UAW) union, which represents workers at major automakers in Michigan, has also expressed support for this transition. "The UAW applauds the State of Michigan for showing that the electric vehicle transition doesn’t have to be a race to the bottom," said UAW President Shawn Fain. "We encourage the state to purchase union-made EVs for all state vehicles, giving America’s autoworkers their fair share of this historic moment for the American auto industry."
— Tim province (@Mrfixitnv) December 5, 2023
The Detroit Regional Chamber, a leading business organization, echoed this sentiment and praised the governor's actions. "Moving our state vehicles to clean energy propulsion systems is a significant step towards Michigan’s leadership as a clean energy economy," said Glenn Stevens Jr., the vice president of automotive and mobility initiatives. "Our state fleet will be a leading example of zero-emission vehicles on our roads and will help set a precedent for all public and personal transportation to move in this direction."
Governor Whitmer's directive comes just one week after signing a landmark legislative package that sets ambitious green energy goals for the state's power providers. It also aligns with President Biden's executive order calling for all federal vehicle acquisitions to be exclusively zero-emission by 2035. With these actions, Michigan joins other states like New Mexico in leading the way towards a more sustainable future.
As the movement towards clean energy gains momentum, Michigan is proving to be a strong example of government and industry working together to drive positive change. The transition to zero-emission vehicles is just one step in Governor Whitmer's larger efforts to create a healthier and more sustainable Michigan for generations to come.