DETROIT (AP) — General Motors is switching sides in the legal fight against California's right to set its own clean-air standards, abandoning the Trump administration as the president's term nears its close. CEO Mary Barra said in a letter Monday to environmental groups that GM will no longer support the Trump administration in its defense against a lawsuit over its efforts against California's standards. And GM is urging other automakers to do the same. The move is a sign that GM and other automakers are anticipating big changes when President-elect Joe Biden takes office in January. Already at least one other large automaker, Toyota, said it may join GM in switching to California's team. In her letter, Barra wrote that the company agrees with Biden's plan to expand electric vehicle use. Last week, GM said it is testing a new battery chemistry that will bring down electric vehicle costs to those of gas-powered vehicles within five years. Barra sent the letter after a Monday morning conversation with Mary Nichols, head of California's Air Resources Board, the company said. The board is the state’s air pollution regulator. “We believe the ambitious electrification goals of the President-elect, California, and General Motors are aligned, to address climate change by drastically reducing automobile emissions,” the letter said. Nichols called GM’s announcement good news. "I was pleased to be in communication with Mary Barra again,” she said. “It’s been a while since we had talked.” The news, coupled with GM announcing it was recalling 7 million vehicles and avoiding a drawn-out legal fight, helped to push the automaker's shares up 4% Monday to close at $44.77. Earlier in the day, the stock hit $45.16, its highest level in more than two years. GM's stock has more than doubled in value since April. Dan Becker of the Center for Biological Diversity, one of the environmental groups Barra wrote to, said GM was wrong in trying to stop California from protecting its people from auto pollution. “Now the other automakers must follow GM and withdraw support for (President Donald) Trump’s attack on clean cars,” he said in an email. The White House did not respond to a request for comment, and the Environmental Protection Agency would say only that it is interesting to see the changing positions of U.S. companies. In a statement, Biden said GM's decision is encouraging for the economy, the planet and success of American auto workers. “GM’s decision reinforces how shortsighted the Trump administration’s efforts to erode American ingenuity and America’s defenses against the climate threat truly are,” the statement said, adding that the ripple effects will help the U.S. innovate and create good-paying union jobs. Last year General Motors, Fiat Chrysler, Toyota and 10 smaller automakers sided with the Trump administration in a lawsuit over whether California has the right to set its own standards for greenhouse gas emissions and fuel economy. The compa

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