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Pritzker’s electric vehicle manufacturing bill doesn’t do enough to clean the air

Telling vehicle manufactures they need to start selling more electric vehicles in Illinois will show the world how serious we are about our zero-emission vehicle future.

Gov. J.B. Pritzker
Gov. J.B. Pritzker speaks during a press conference on Oct. 25 at the Thompson Center.
Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times

Gov. J.B. Pritzker’s plan to retain and grow electric vehicle manufacturing in Illinois makes sense, but it’s incomplete. We can and should manufacture electric vehicles and ship them to other states. But Illinois also needs to sell more electric vehicles here, so we see them on our roads and see the clean air benefits in our communities.

Rivian and Lion Electric are set to roll out thousands of electric vehicles from their Illinois factories, including pickups, Amazon delivery vans, school buses and big trucks. Growing that industry here is critical. It’s also smart to help existing car factories near Rockford and on Chicago’s Southeast Side pivot to a clean electric vehicle future rather than see good jobs and futures leave for other states.

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But we need to see a lot more zero-emission electric vehicles sold and driven in Illinois to get the clean air and health benefits here. Many Illinois communities, especially disadvantaged communities of color, still face unacceptable health threats from air pollution emitted by millions of gasoline and diesel tailpipes. Pritzker should sign onto an agreement with 15 states that requires 30% of new truck and bus sales to be electric by 2030, 100% by 2050 and make concrete progress toward those goals. He should also have Illinois join the 14 states, including Colorado and Minnesota, that require manufacturers to sell more electric cars, pickups and SUVs within their borders.

The governor said he wants to see a million electric vehicles in Illinois by 2030, about eight years from now. Telling vehicle manufactures they need to start selling more electric vehicles in Illinois will show the world how serious we are about our zero-emission vehicle future, and how much we value the people who live and breathe here.

Brian Urbaszewski, director of environmental health programs, Respiratory Health Association

Bowman and the Wirtz family

If I didn’t know better, I would think the Wirtz family is giving Stan Bowman a good recommendation he doesn’t deserve on his way out the door. They “appreciate his dedication” and “ultimately accept that — in his first year as general manager — he made a mistake...”

Let’s rephrase this. When Stan Bowman was the general manager of the Blackhawks he knowingly allowed a sexual predator to continue working for the company in close proximity to one of the victims. He knowingly circumvented company policy and actively worked to cover up a sexual assault so that the assaulter was free to continue his activity and career, ultimately resulting in the alleged rape of a child.

The Wirtz family needs to rethink their opinion of what happened here.

Don Anderson, Oak Park

Winning at all costs...

Is it really so surprising that Chicago Blackhawks’ executives would hide the sexual misconduct of a fellow employee to avoid upsetting team chemistry?

Winning at all costs is a recurring theme that now extends into every corner of our existence.

After all, it’s the primary motivation of our disgraced ex-president, it’s the anthem that led hundreds of anarchists to storm the Capitol on Jan. 6 and it is the siren song for all those Republicans in congress who continue to perpetuate the “Big Lie.”

Bob Ory, Elgin