"I'm okay with electric cars, too. I think I'm all for electric cars. I've given big incentives for electric cars. But what they've done in California is just crazy," he said.
For his part, Biden promised to rejoin the Paris agreement if elected and stressed the need to move away from fossil fuels.
"Nobody is going to build another coal-fired plant in America. No one's going to build another oil-fired plant in America. They're going to move to renewable energy," Biden said.
"We're going to make sure that we are able to take the federal fleet and turn it into a fleet that's run on, they're electric vehicles, making sure we can do that," he added. "We're going to put 500,000 charging stations on all of the highways that we're going to be building in the future."
Biden also pledged to improve energy efficiency in buildings and new homes.
Although Biden's response on climate issues was not his most coherent moment of the night — he stumbled over his position on the so-called Green New Deal, among other things — his statements underscored the stark differences between the two men on environmental policy.
"We are going to be in a position where we can create hard, hard, good jobs by making sure the environment is clean and we all are in better shape," Biden said. "We spend billions of dollars now, billions of dollars on floods, hurricanes, rising seas. We're in real trouble.
"Look what's happened just in the Midwest with these storms that come through and wipe out entire sections and counties in Iowa. They didn't happen before. They're because of global warming. That's why we have to get back into the Paris accord."
And with that, moderator Chris Wallace moved on to the important final topic of "election integrity," ushering in another round of misinformation from the president regarding the security of mail-in ballots.