California Laying Groundwork for Gas Vehicle Ban by 2035

California Laying Groundwork for Gas Vehicle Ban by 2035

( – California Governor Gavin Newsom issued an order in 2020 requiring all new vehicles sold in the state to be zero-emission, meaning no more gas power, by 2035. Reaching that goal may prove to be difficult, according to the California Air Resources Board (CARB). On April 12, in a proposal, CARB said over one-third of new vehicles would have to be zero-emission by 2026 to reach the goal.

The Road Is Rough

CARB notes many changes must occur to make electric vehicles more appealing to the public. If lawmakers can’t get people on board with the switch from gas power, it will be impossible to reach the 2035 goal.

CARB explains the state must introduce more charging stations and lower the costs of batteries to make it possible for people to switch their vehicles. They also suggested more aggressive marketing campaigns to teach people about the benefits of switching to cleaner energy.

A Potential Complication

There is also the question of whether the power grid will be able to handle the demand from all the new electric vehicles. In a 2021 report from Newsmax, the publication noted California’s grid is already under immense strain during the summer months. There’s little doubt upgrades are in store, which could send consumer prices soaring.

Some argue that hydrogen fuel cells may be a better solution, but they haven’t taken off in the market. Lawmakers tend to focus more on pushing electric vehicles, leaving hydrogen power in the dust. But it’s another viable zero-emission option with fewer issues than electricity. Those in power may wish to switch the focus, enticing more people to switch from gasoline.

The New Plan

The proposal from CARB, the Advanced Clean Cars II Regulations, would increase the sale of electric and other zero-emission vehicles, requiring 35% of new sales to be hydrogen or electric by 2026. By 2030, the plan assumes 68% of all car sales would be zero-emission vehicles.

The plan also includes measures to help make owning a zero-emission car or truck more affordable. The board set a hearing date of June 9 to discuss the proposal.

Next Steps

As California tries to adopt these aggressive measures to combat its pollution issue, other states may also be moving in the same direction. At least 15 states, including New York, Washington, Pennsylvania, Colorado, Massachusetts, and Virginia, have adopted California’s vehicle standards for clean emissions. Timelines for compliance may differ by state.

Could such plans spread across the nation? If so, is the US ready for this kind of change?

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