The Power of All-Energy

Majority of voters favor gasoline-car phaseout. But all-electric goal faces tough opposition

President Trump took America back to the days of the “giant fuel” era with his “energy independence” initiative. To win it, he pledged to end foreign oil imports for cars and trucks and end the import of oil into the United States altogether.

Trump’s proposal will have far-reaching effects on the industry, but most of its details have remained a mystery. So we decided to test the full details on you, the voters.

Our first question: When will you have to abandon “gasoline” if you drive your car today? “Soon” seemed like an adequate response. But then we considered more options.

In a recent NPR/PBS NewsHour/Marist Poll, 54 percent of voters favored ending the use of gasoline as the fuel for cars and trucks.

It’s the second-highest approval rating for ending the use of gasoline, after the “end the war on drugs”. We tested responses for a “soon” option, “sometime later” and “never”.

Our second question: Can you afford to buy an all-electric car? If you did, you might have to choose between buying a Tesla Model 3 or an all-electric Chevy Bolt, the current electric vehicle leader.

The answer? Almost everyone says they’d buy an all-electric vehicle. More than 60 percent of respondents said they’d go electric.

The survey was conducted online March 22 – April 5 with a sample of 605 registered voters nationwide, including in the states of Alaska, Maryland, South Carolina and Texas. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.83 percentage points.

A number of factors are making a difference, as described in the report, as well as the results of our poll. We’ll explain them in detail, but here’s the short version: All of the news we have about electricity, battery research and battery costs is good. The biggest news is that all-electric vehicles, which are already making significant inroads in the U.S., are getting cheaper every single day. And thanks to a sharp drop in battery costs, we are starting to see all-electric vehicles dominate the U.S. car market, even with Tesla’s dominance

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