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Biden turned to Tesla for help with electric car policy reform despite his feud with Elon Musk, report

Business Insider US
Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk.Steve Nesius/Reuter
Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk. Steve Nesius/Reuters
  • The Biden administration turned to Tesla for help with renewable fuel policy reform, as per Reuters.
  • The Biden administration contacted Tesla on its first day in office, as per Reuters.
  • The White House wants half of all new vehicles sold in the US to have zero emissions by 2030.
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.

The White House sought advice on renewable fuel policy reform from Tesla despite US President Joe Biden's public bickering with its founder and chief executive Elon Musk, Reuters reported.

The administration contacted the electric car maker on its first day in office, according to emails seen by the news agency, leading to a series of meetings with Tesla and other electric vehicle makers in the following months.

Tesla did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.

The emails show the administration trying to involve the company changing rules to allow electric vehicles to benefit from lucrative renewable fuel subsidies, as per Reuters. Biden has since set a target of one in two new vehicles sold in the US having zero emissions by 2030.

That transition is one of Biden's key climate change policies. The transport sector was the largest producer of greenhouse gasses in the US economy, accounting for 27% of total emissions in 2020, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

When Biden first took office, Musk was supportive of the administration and its commitment to sustainability. He told Fortune in January last year that he was "super fired up" to have an administration focused on tackling climate change. 

But since then Musk and Biden have traded a series of public jabs. Most recently, Biden appeared to mock Musk's interest in space travel, while Musk referred to the President as a "damp sock puppet,"  Insider reported.

Musk now says he plans to vote Republican.


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