WASHINGTON, March 29 (Reuters) – Senate Energy Committee Chairman Joe Manchin said on Wednesday he may go to court after the U.S. Treasury Department issues guidance later this week on guidance for battery purchases for tax credits for electric vehicles.
“If it goes off the rails”[ads1]; and violates the intent of the climate legislation passed in August, “I will do everything I can — if that means going to court and I can do that, I would,” Manchin said. a democrat.
Manchin said he is most concerned about how Treasury will classify processing and manufacturing to determine eligibility for the $7,500 EV tax credit. Manchin, who has often pushed fossil fuel industry interests in Congress, says he is trying to move the electric car supply chain from China. His political opponents say he doesn’t like the electric car industry.
“Manufacturing is supposed to bring manufacturing back to the United States. It’s not basically allowing everybody to put all the parts and build everything you can for that battery somewhere else and then ship it here for assembly,” Manchin told reporters.
Reuters previously reported that the Treasury’s battery purchase rules for electric vehicle tax credits, due by Friday, will result in fewer vehicles qualifying for full or partial credits.
The EV rules are part of a $430 billion bill passed by Democrats in August to cut greenhouse gas emissions and reduce drug costs, called the Inflation Reduction Act.
Treasury declined to comment on Manchin’s comments.
Under the new rules, 50% of the value of battery components must be manufactured or assembled in North America for EV buyers to qualify for $3,750 of the credit, and 40% of the value of critical minerals must be sourced from the United States or a country with which it has a FTA with to qualify for an additional $3,750 credit.
These quotas increase by 10 percentage points annually.
China dominates the global supply chains of products such as EV batteries and solar panels.
Manchin hammered the Biden administration, which he lost in legislative negotiations last year, in a Wall Street Journal opinion piece on Wednesday, accusing it of thwarting the bill’s original intent.
“Instead of implementing the law as intended, unelected ideologues, bureaucrats and appointees seem determined to break and undermine the law to advance a partisan political agenda that ignores both energy and financial security…At every turn, the Administration is trying to implement the bill it wanted, not the bill Congress actually passed.”
Manchin also urged Biden “to sit down with fiscally minded Republicans and Democrats to negotiate common sense reforms to get fiscal policy out of control.”
The White House had no immediate comment.
Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Heather Timmons and Stephen Coates
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