The vote banned new gas-powered car sales after 2035

  • Don’t worry, you’ll still be able to drive your gas-powered vehicle in California at the end of the next decade; you simply won’t be able to buy a new vehicle there unless it’s a zero-emission model.
  • The new rule is a bold move, but it’s part of the state’s Air Resources Board’s efforts to clean the air since the late 1960s.
  • Automakers have reacted to these restrictive regulations around the world and they have had time to prepare for similar rules in effect in the United States.

    Today, the California Air Resources Board voted to only allow new passenger cars, trucks and SUVs to be sold in California if they have zero tailpipe emissions, starting in 2035. of the Advanced Clean Cars II (ACCII) proposal means no new gas-powered vehicles and no new diesels will be sold in the state within a dozen years.

    This is an obviously important decision, and it is really only the last step in a long process. The state has slowly and steadily moved toward increased use of zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) since the establishment of the Air Resources Board (CARB) in 1967. California has led the nation in the transition to cleaner vehicles, pushing automakers to build more. efficient gasoline vehicles, then hybrids, then plug-in hybrids (PHEV) and then, over the last decade, more and more zero-emission vehicles, including all-electric and hydrogen models. Last year, ZEVs and PHEVs accounted for 16% of all new vehicles sold in the state, more than any other state in the country. Washington State is ahead of California in developing similar legislation, but is one of the states that intends to follow California’s lead and adopt ZEV rules. of CARB.

    It’s fair to say that today’s rule is the most sweeping change to CARB in its 55-year history. The exact details of the rule have not been finalized, but a total ban on sales of new gasoline and diesel vehicles is something entirely different for the United States. Questions remain about how PHEVs will be dealt with after 2035 and how states that have agreed to follow CARB’s ZEV rules will respond. CARB will also have to submit its new regulations to the Environmental Protection Agency for approval.

    Despite the big step represented by ACCII, the rules are based on reality. First, there will still be plenty of vehicles that burn gasoline and diesel on California roads in 2035 and beyond. Unless a similar federal rule comes along (don’t hold your breath), anyone will still be able to buy a gas-powered car in another state and register it with the California DMV. Gasoline and diesel vehicles will still be able to be resold in California as used vehicles. Obviously, they will also still be allowed to drive in the state. CARB’s FAQ on the new rules realistically states that it will take “many years” to actually get all gas-powered cars off the road.

    There is a silver lining

    The CARB and Advanced Clean Cars II aren’t perfect, but the Board has a history of success. Without the old CARB regulations, we wouldn’t have had the hybrids, hydrogen cars, and electric vehicles we have today. We probably wouldn’t have Tesla or the Ford F-150 Lightning, the Nissan Leaf or startups like Rivian and Lucid. We probably wouldn’t have crowned the Hyundai Ioniq 5 our 2022 EV of the year. We might not even have had an EV Of The Year award to give out.

    American car buyers can choose any of these electric vehicles, in part because CARB has spent decades bending the industry to its will. Emissions regulations in Europe and China have also encouraged the development of electric vehicles, and the industry has responded to all of these government pressure points by investing billions of dollars in the design of new electric vehicle models, developing better batteries and establishing an increasing number of production facilities to build all of these cars. . With all of these gears now in motion, CARB is once again pushing the limit of what is possible. Smart CARB didn’t create that rule in 2010 when the first consumer electric vehicle hit the market, nor did it say today that ZEVs would be the only option on dealer lots at from 2025. Instead, after giving automakers plenty of time to sort things out, CARB is now telling them they still have more than a decade to complete their shift to electric vehicles (in California, less). CARB’s decision is strong, but it’s not unreasonable.

    Ford and Toyota weigh in

    Some automakers have already signaled their approval. Ford is “proud of our partnership with California for tougher vehicle emissions standards,” the automaker’s chief sustainability officer, Bob Holycross, said in a statement that also called the new rules a “historic standard. who will define clean transportation and set an example for the United States.”

    Then there’s Toyota, which has never been a big proponent of battery-electric vehicles. The automaker introduced its first true all-electric model this year, the bZ4x, and is already on the second generation of the hydrogen-powered Mirai. This week, in possibly related news, Toyota announced it would recognize CARB’s power to set its own automotive emissions standards. The automaker had been battling CARB for years, but has now dropped that legal challenge. Toyota tweeted this week that it shares “the vision of greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction and carbon neutrality goals with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the State of California.” Zero emission writing is on the wall. Ahead.

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