Maine has adopted the Advanced Clean Car II rules, which encourage dealers to sell 43% electric and/or plug-in hybrid new vehicles by 2027, increasing to 82% by 2032.

This change has elicited a firestorm of protest about EVs. But this firestorm is based on misinformation. The rule does not force people to buy an EV. Instead, they can buy a brand new plug-in hybrid. (Or they can buy a fossil-fuel-powered used car.)

Here are the definitions. Regular hybrid cars have small propulsion batteries and are not designed to run on batteries alone. Plug-in hybrid cars have larger batteries and can go 10-30 miles on battery power, usually enough to get to work and back. The batteries can then be recharged overnight, at home, without special sockets, with electricity that has hopefully been generated by sun or wind.

If a plug-in hybrid car’s battery runs low on a long trip, the car can perform normally on gasoline for another 300-400 miles. Plug-in hybrids are the perfect technology for a smooth transition to all-electric transportation.

The world must make the transition away from fossil fuels. In Maine we are already paying for decades of delay with hotter summers, rainier winters, bigger rainstorms and floods, and erosion of beaches and waterfront property. Other areas have wildfires and frequent ferocious hurricanes.

Eventually switching to all-electric vehicles makes sense. Plug-in hybrids are the perfect transition vehicles.

The proposed regulations on vehicle sales are actually very reasonable.

Ben Lounsbury, Auburn

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