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Maine rejects sweeping EV mandate in blow to governor’s climate agenda – ‘Affordable transportation is a requirement, not a luxury, in rural Maine’ – Dem Maine Rep. declares

By Thomas Catenacci Fox News

Maine’s top environmental regulator rejected a proposed state electric vehicle (EV) mandate in a surprise vote, bucking climate concerns voiced by eco groups and Democrats.

The Maine Board of Environmental Protection (BEP) turned down the so-called Advanced Clean Cars program after receiving overwhelming opposition from stakeholders and citizens. The proposed program would have closely mirrored regulations approved in California, mandating that at least 51% of new car purchases in the state be electric by 2028 and 82% be electric by 2032.

“The Maine Board of Environmental Protection received nearly 1,800 comments from the people of Maine and nearly 84% were not in favor of this EV mandate,” Maine Senate Republican Leader Trey Stewart told Fox News Digital. “Maine is far too rural with far too few charging stations, and many Mainers are also concerned about the reliability of these vehicles in our extreme cold weather months.”

According to BEP filings, earlier this year, the state received a total of 1,783 public comment letters with just 287 supporting the Advanced Clean Cars rule. A whopping 1,496 letters were filed in opposition to the mandate.

Among the stakeholders who filed opposition letters were the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, Maine Automobile Dealers Association and Democratic Maine Rep. Jared Golden, who represents a largely rural congressional district.

“Affordable transportation is a requirement, not a luxury, in rural Maine,” Golden said in a social media post on X, formerly Twitter, following the vote. “Regulations must recognize reality: California-style emissions standards would impose logistic and financial hurdles that Maine isn’t ready to clear. The state BEP made the right decision to reject them.”