On June 1st, 2022, The European Union voted to ban the sale of gas-powered cars by 2035. This vote was anything but unanimous, with 339 members of the parliament voting for the ban and 249 voting against it (Frangoul). Members of the European Union hope that this change will radically affect the current trajectory of climate change. This ban, if implemented as planned, will fully eliminate carbon emissions from automobiles in 27 countries (Joubert).

In addition to banning gas-powered vehicles, the European Union pledged to cut carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles by more than half by 2030, as compared to the emissions from 2021 (AP News). 

The complete 2035 ban would force countries in the European Union to fully transition to electric vehicles. Although this may seem ambitious from afar, economists expect this to be fairly simple due to the continual decrease in the prices of electric vehicles. The cost of electric vehicles is expected to increase by 22 percent in the next four years but decline significantly in the following five years (Joubert). 

Many vehicle manufacturers are attempting to maintain profits during this transition by moving away from internal combustion engines. General Motors, one of the leading car manufacturers, announced last year that they will fully eliminate the production of gas-powered vehicles by 2035. Other manufacturers sought to follow this precedent, such as Ford who announced that it will move its production toward electric vehicles (Joubert). 

Will the European Union’s ban have a ripple effect on other parts of the world? Japan and Canada plan to eventually eliminate gas-powered vehicles by 2035. On the other hand, the United States is far from eliminating gas-powered cars. Some states, however, such as California and Massachusetts have already pledged to follow a similar agenda as the European Union, and perhaps this is a sign of a larger trend to come (Joubert).

Sources used:

“EU Lawmakers Endorse Ban on Combustion-Engine Cars in 2035.” AP NEWS, Associated Press, 8 June 2022, https://apnews.com/article/climate-european-parliament-union-and-environment-336524fead81e58eb755ba004880f201. 13 June 2022. 

Frangoul, Anmar. “Goodbye Gasoline Cars? EU Lawmakers Vote to Ban New Sales from 2035.” CNBC, CNBC, 9 June 2022, https://www.cnbc.com/2022/06/09/goodbye-gasoline-cars-eu-lawmakers-vote-to-ban-new-sales-from-2035.html. 13 June 2022. 

Joubert, Morgyn. “EU’s Vote Could Be the Beginning of the End for Combustion Engine Cars.” News @ Northeastern, 10 June 2022, https://news.northeastern.edu/2022/06/10/ban-on-combustion-engine-cars/. 13 June 2022. 

O’Kane, Sean. “EU Proposes Phasing out New Internal Combustion Cars by 2035.” The Verge, The Verge, 14 July 2021, https://www.theverge.com/2021/7/14/22576994/european-union-gas-vehicle-ice-ban-2035-electric-cars. 13 June 2022.