Senators press Biden on gas-powered vehicles

California’s two U.S. senators are pressing President Joe Biden to set a deadline to end sales of gas-fueled passenger cars and trucks. Democratic Senators Alex Padilla and Dianne Feinstein sent a letter to the president Monday urging him in their words, “to follow California’s lead.”

California climbed into the driver’s seat on this issue back in September, when Governor Gavin Newsom signed an executive order directing the state’s air resources agency to require all new vehicles sold to be zero-emission by 2035.

Biden is a big proponent of clean energy and has vowed to boost electric vehicles and charging stations. But his campaign last year declined to endorse a specific date to end sales of gas-powered vehicles.

The senators also say he should use the compromise deal the state struck with automakers that falls between the levels set by Presidents Donald Trump and Barack Obama. Trump rolled back fuel economy standards to 1.5% yearly boosts in fuel efficiency from the 5% level set under the Obama administration. Biden has ordered agencies to revisit fuel efficiency standards by July.

Meanwhile, Automakers are setting their own finish lines. GM aims to end gas passenger car and truck sales by 2035. Volvo’s car line-up is set to be fully electric by 2030, and Ford’s European lineup fully electric also by 2030.

The White House and the trade group Alliance for Automotive Innovation declined to comment.