California Governor Gavin Newsom has announced that from 2035 only emission-free cars may be sold in the state. By 2045 every new commercial utility vehicle will have to be emission-free.
In California, the transport sector is responsible for more than half of the total CO2 emissions as well as for the exorbitant emission of fine dust and nitrogen oxides. Newsome said that the executive order phasing out the sales of combustion engine vehicles should tackle this problem, as well as support California’s economy because “Zero-emission vehicles are a key part of California’s clean, innovation economy – already California’s second-largest global export market,” as the Governor’s press release on his executive order underlined.
“This is the most impactful step our state can take to fight climate change,” said Governor Newsom. “For too many decades, we have allowed cars to pollute the air that our children and families breathe. Californians shouldn’t have to worry if our cars are giving our kids asthma. Our cars shouldn’t make wildfires worse – and create more days filled with smoky air. Cars shouldn’t melt glaciers or raise sea levels threatening our cherished beaches and coastlines.”
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) now has the task of drafting regulations for a ban on the sale of new vehicles with combustion engines from 2035. Other accompanying measures include instructing government agencies to work in partnership with the private sector to accelerate the introduction of affordable hydrogen fuelling and charging facilities. The state also wants to support markets for new and used electric vehicles. Incentives for train services, other public transport, bicycle and pedestrian traffic will also be created.
California is home to the largest electric car market in the USA. The state has propelled this forward with a number of both municipal and state political measures. California has been trying to tackle the problem of pollution for years with various restrictions on emissions from cars. The quotas laid down in the ‘ZEV mandate’ (Zero Emission Vehicle), are based on an exemption regulation that has presented a thorn in the side of the Trump administration, particularly because the Californian ZEV mandate is increasingly being adopted by more states.
The carbon dioxide and toxic emissions from cars are by no means the only focus for the combustion engine phase-out. California aiming to transform the commercial vehicle sector. In June this year, the state government announced that from 2024 onwards manufacturers will be required to sell a gradually increasing proportion of electrically powered trucks, vans and pickup trucks by 2035. By 2045, every new commercial vehicle in the US state should be emission-free. At the end of 2018, California decided that starting in 2029, mass transit agencies in California will only be allowed to buy zero-emission buses under a rule adopted by the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
The new executive order also “requires the support of new and used zero-emission vehicle markets to provide broad access to zero-emission vehicles for all Californians.” Here, Governor also made clear that the executive will not prevent Californians from owning combustion engine cars or selling them on the used car market.
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