California will join other jurisdictions, including France and Sweden, in banning the sale of new cars with internal-combustion engines.
The proposed ban announced by California governor Gavin Newsom will see the state ban the sale of new passenger cars and trucks with internal combustion engines in the state by 2035.
A similar ban will take place by 2045 for medium- and heavy-duty trucks “where feasible”.
The state estimates the ban will reduce California’s greenhouse gas emissions by 35 per cent.
Newsom’s latest executive order will not prevent Californians from owning petrol- or diesel-powered cars, not will it stop them buying or selling them on the used-car market.
Given these exceptions, it will be interesting to see what effect the new restrictions have come 2035, although the governor expects conventional and electric car prices to “reach parity … in just a matter of years”.
In a prepared statement Newsom said: “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.”
After touring the state during its recent wildfires, California governor Gavin Newsom pledged to tackle to climate change, which is being blamed for exacerbating the fires and their frequency.
According to the governor’s office, the transportation sector is responsible for half of the state’s carbon emissions, 80 per cent of smog-causing pollution,
California has long had tougher emissions regulations than those enforced by the US federal government.
It will be interesting to see if any other US states follow California’s lead as a number already use California’s stricter emissions standards.
In other actions announced today, the state’s agencies have also been told to work with the private sector to improve charging infrastructure, rules related to oil extraction will be tightened up, and no new fracking permits will be issued by 2024.
Cover image by Sam Amil via Flickr, Creative Commons 2.0 licence