California Will Only Allow Zero-Emission Vehicle Sales By 2035
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California Gov. Gavin Newsom this week announced a statewide ban on new gas and diesel vehicle sales by 2035. The executive order, issued on Wednesday, aims to accelerate The Golden State's efforts to combat climate change and reduce its reliance on fossil fuels.
Known for its car culture (and, subsequently, traffic congestion and air pollution), California is the first to implement such sanctions in the United States. More than 30 countries and cities across the globe have proposed banning the sale of fossil fuel-powered vehicles in hopes of reducing health risks, meeting greenhouse gas targets and increasing energy independence.
"This is the most impactful step our state can take to fight climate change," Newsom said in a statement. "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."
In 15 years, 100 percent of in-state sales of new passenger cars and trucks will be zero emission — i.e. battery- or hydrogen-powered. The sweeping plan also mandates that drayage trucks and off-road vehicles and equipment go emissions-free by 2035; medium- and heavy-duty vehicles, meanwhile, must ditch internal combustion engines by 2045. The rules apply only to new gasoline- or diesel-powered vehicles sold in the state after the ban goes into effect. Cars and trucks registered before 2035 will remain street legal.