New Mexicans voice concern and support over electric vehicle proposal
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Dozens of New Mexicans lined up Monday morning to help push the proposed clean car standards across the finish line.
“I think New Mexicans can meet the challenge to improve our air quality and our lives together.”
A recent climate change report found everyday vehicles produce roughly 9% of all emissions in New Mexico.
Supporters believe the proposed rules could lower that number, but opponents say there are other consequences to think about:
“No matter how much money is plowed into EV charging stations, there’s never going to be enough in this state.”
“I don’t believe our power grid is set up to have that kind of demand put on it.”
“They are very expensive. I don’t think that the common New Mexican can afford it.”
“It’s going to create artificial scarcity for the internal combustion vehicles that are the most affordable transportation.”
New Mexico Department of Transportation officials say there’s nearly 100 new charging stations planned statewide with at least three dozen in Albuquerque alone.
A PNM spokesperson says they’re already working to modernize the power grid. As for the costs, supporters say history could repeat itself.
“Once we reach the tipping point, like solar energy in the 2000s, the technology for electric vehicles will improve a ton along with prices coming down to more for affordable, where everybody can get one.”
State regulators are expected to make their final decision over the clean car standards this month, but there’s still time for you to speak up. There are several more public hearings scheduled this week.
The clean car standards were first developed in California and have already been adopted by 18 other states, including Colorado.
The pollution-focused rules require car dealerships to stock more electric and hybrid vehicles on their lots, ideally giving shoppers some more eco-friendly options.
If approved in New Mexico, that requirement would start at 43% of new vehicles in 2027, and would quickly rise to 82% just five years after that.
At no point do these proposed regulations say New Mexicans have to buy an electric car.