Pete Buttigieg speaks at the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation nomination hearings to review his anticipated nomination for Secretary of Transportation in Washington.
Ken Cedeno | Reuters
The US Senate confirmed Pete Buttigieg as Secretary of Transportation on Tuesday and presented the former presidential candidate with a multitude of challenges – from the President Joe BidenEnvironmental priorities of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Buttigieg, the former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, got approval last week following largely approval from the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation friendly listening. He was asked about issues related to Covid-19, the much-needed improvement in infrastructure, and strengthening the powers of the Federal Aviation Administration if he were to lead the DOT, which has 55,000 employees.
The Senate approved Buttigieg’s 86-13 nomination with an overwhelming majority.
In the first two weeks, Biden’s government has already taken strict measures in terms of transportation measures to contain the spread of Covid-19. Biden extended an entry ban for most non-US citizens who have recently been to Brazil, the UK and much of Europe. On Tuesday, the US government asked passengers to wear masks on planes, trains, buses, ferries and other means of transport.
Buttigieg’s DOT could become a driving or limiting force in the adoption of new technologies, especially autonomous and electric vehicles.
Biden has already directed federal agencies to consider revising the Trump administration’s lowered fuel emission standards for vehicles. He also said he plans to replace the government’s fleet of cars and trucks with US-assembled electric vehicles.
The 39-year-old will be the first openly gay person to hold a cabinet position and one of the youngest ever.
– – CNBC’s Michael Wayland contributed to this article.