Last month, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) voted on a proposal to push the state closer to its zero-emission goals. Under the direction of a 2020 executive order from Governor Gavin Newsom, the board approved a set of regulations known as Advanced Clean Cars II. Now, the board is considering further legislation that would aggressively target heavy-duty trucks.
CARB Voted Last Month to Phase Out Gasoline-Only Passenger Cars
The Advanced Clean Cars II regulations mandate that all light-duty vehicles sold in California must have zero emissions by 2035. Zero emission vehicles include battery electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids, and fuel cell electric vehicles. However, only 20% of new vehicles can be plug-in hybrids, which still use gasoline. Gasoline-only cars will still be street legal in California, but auto makers can’t sell any new ones beyond 2035.
While climate activists said that this passenger vehicle policy doesn’t go far enough, many expressed excitement over the new laws. The new regulations expand on existing California policies that keep it at the forefront of EV adoption. However, CARB is also considering some legislation that will be much more controversial: banning diesel trucks.
The Air Resources Board Will Vote on Requiring Electric Heavy-Duty Trucks
The new proposal that CARB will vote on is called the Advanced Clean Fleets regulation. This set of laws will force truck makers in California to phase out diesel-powered trucks in favor of hybrid and electric trucks. If CARB approves the proposal, it will be illegal to sell diesel-powered big rigs in California by 2040. The board should vote on the proposal in late October.
The ACF regulations have been far more controversial than their light-duty vehicle counterparts. While no one denies that heavy-duty vehicles are big polluters, many in the freight industry are worried about California having the means to support compliance. While California has the most EV charging stations in the country, it is also a very large state. These regulations would force the state to expand its EV infrastructure quickly.