Inspiration: Accuracy in Fuel Economy Standards Act H.R. 6643 (IH) Problem to be Addressed
Due to the current dependency of the U.S. on fossil fuel resources which has resulted in an uptake in lung-related diseases within the country, this bill proposes the implementation of a hybrid car subsidy to lessen fuel dependency and clean up the atmosphere.
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The proposed bill shall have an annual cost of $400 million (negotiable and to be increased based on demand) to provide a subsidy on a set amount of hybrid cars
Application of subsidy will be done on a distributor level with the government assuming a portion of the cost of sale
This bill will go into effect 1 year from March 1, 2014, at which point the subsidy will be applied to all hybrid car sales.
The U.S. currently has two main problems that adversely affect its population; the first is its dependency on fossil fuel resources while the second is the pollution that comes from such a dependency. Current studies that have examined trends in the development of population-specific ailments have noted a correlation between the rise in lung-related diseases with the increase in pollutants in the general environment, specifically from motorized vehicles. This is due to the particulates that are released which make their way into the lungs of pedestrians resulting in long-term complications if exposed to sufficient quantities over the course of their life.
While there have been some attempts at addressing such an issue, such as efforts to increase government-regulated fuel efficiency standards for motorized vehicles by Congressperson Todd Russell Platts of Pennsylvania, the fact remains that automobiles are the main source of pollutants in America today. Unfortunately, such a problem is compounded by America’s dependency on fossil fuel resources which means that aside from making cars more fuel-efficient, there are relatively few ways of curbing the current trend in diseases that occur due to inhalation of particulates released by automobiles.
How does the proposed bill address the issue?
The proposed bill addresses the issue by providing a greater subsidy towards hybrid car production and sale (Armstrong, 90). Hybrid cars have two selling points which they use in order to appeal to consumers, the first is that hybrid models have a lower carbon footprint as compared to other cars and, as such, help to promote environmental conservation while the other selling point is the supposed future cost benefits accrued through fuel savings.
By subsidizing hybrid cars and promoting their use to the general public, the government can in effect curb the current trends in fossil fuel dependency and lung-related diseases (York, 3). The primary role of the government in this instance is a promoter and financier of hybrid car popularization among the citizens of the country.
Why is this an appropriate activity for the Federal Government?
The federal government has a vested interest in ensuring the continued safety and security of the local populace within the country. Knowingly facilitating the dependence of its local citizenry on fossil fuel resources could lead to catastrophic consequences in the future should gas prices go up or if pollutants in the atmosphere reach critical levels (Chupp, Myles, and Stephenson, 120-133). It is due to this that facilitating less dependence could result in a better local environment for American citizens due to fewer pollutants in the air and possibly lower gas prices as well.
Costs and Benefits
Hybrid vehicles such as the Honda Insight or the Toyota Prius have gained considerable market shares within the past few years due to the greater fuel economy they possess which leads to fewer emissions being released into the atmosphere. In fact, recent sales reports from various dealerships scattered throughout the U.S. indicate that though hybrid car sales encompass only 3% of new car sales within the U.S. the number is expected to rapidly increase as the cost of production goes down and more models are offered to the general public. While hybrid cards may seem expensive now, the fact remains that in the long term they help to address the current problem of fuel usage within the U.S.
Estimate on Proposal Costs
The estimated proposal costs on hybrid cars subsidies are based on an uptake ratio of 100,000 cars within 1 year as estimated by Montlake (2013) who explained the potential uptake of hybrid cars (Montlake, 5). The proposed subsidy is $400 million a year resulting in a $4,000 discount for every hybrid car sold. While $4,000 may not seem like much at the present, this can still make hybrid cars far more appealing to consumers due to their lower cost.
Why did I sponsor this bill?
I decided to sponsor this bill due to the constant increase in fuel prices I have been noticing lately as well as the number of cars I see on the road that constantly release smoke in the air.
Who will be adversely affected?
The most likely to be adversely affected are car manufacturers that do not sell hybrid cars since they will experience lower sales rates.
The primary beneficiaries will be pedestrians and car owners since they will be able to save on fuel prices and breathe cleaner air.
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Other potential consequences
Some potential consequences of the bill come in the form of more care manufacturers shifting towards hybrid car development so that they can avail of government subsidies.
Armstrong, Lisa. “Perks We Love.” Working Mother 30.7 (2007): 90. Print.
Chupp, B. Andrew, Katie Myles, and E. Frank Stephenson. “The Incidence Of Hybrid Automobile Tax Preferences.” Public Finance Review 38.1 (2010): 120-133.
Montlake, Simon. “China’s Auto Industry Eyes Subsidies For Electric, Hybrid Cars.” Forbes (2013): 5. Print.
York, Tom. “Study Estimates SDCC’s Economic Impact In Billions.” San Diego Business Journal 34.40 (2013): 3.Print.