California has voted to ban the sale of new gas powered cars by the year 2035, as reported in a statement by The California Air Resources Board. California will require 35 percent of new vehicles, starting in 2026, to be either partially or fully electric. As for the plug-in hybrids, if they provide 70 miles or more of the electric-only range and comply with the other EV regulations, they will count the same as fully electric vehicles (EVs).

Daniel Sperling, a California Air Resources Board member, told CNN that “This is monumental.” He continued, “this is the most important thing that CARB has done in the last 30 years. It’s important not just for California but it’s important for the country and the world.”

The new requirements could encourage the federal government and more than a dozen states to adopt similar rules, according to the New York Times, and then later reported by a special interest website called Interesting Engineering.

Sweden, Canada, and Denmark are the other countries that also had a similar spurt before. Surprisingly, the rules received little backlash, Sperling said, and the auto companies were backing down on the issue. Automobile companies are also working on the production of zero-emission vehicles internally, Sperling stated.

There are also ambitions from several vehicle companies, including Ford and GM, which have announced plans to move toward zero-emission cars, trucks, and SUVs. “The car companies see what’s happening in China, in Europe. Many of them have already made announcements about how they’re converting totally to electric vehicles,” Sperling also said.

An executive order was issued by California Governor Gavin Newsom (D) 2020, as per Forbes, to phase out gasoline-powered cars’ sales to help reduce the transportation sector’s greenhouse gas emissions. The California Air Resources Board was required by the order to develop regulations.

It was promised by many major auto companies that they will produce low/or even zero-emission vehicles and increase sales. But the federal government was called for help by them, however, to make sure there is adequate demand and supplies, such as critical minerals required to make electric vehicles, to do so.

This expected ban in California comes a week after President Joe Biden signed a major climate and health care package, the Inflation Reduction Act. This includes $369 billion in spending on climate and energy programs and tax credits for new and used electric vehicle purchases. There is hope by the Biden administration that greenhouse gas emissions will decrease to 40 percent by 2030.

The duty of protecting the public from the harmful effects of air pollution and developing programs and actions to fight climate change belongs to CARB. A range of practical approaches has been pioneered by California, which has set the standard for effective air and climate programs for the nation and the world, from requirements for clean cars and fuels to adopting innovative solutions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

By effectively reducing air pollutants while recognizing and considering its effects on the economy, CARB’s mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources. CARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health-based air quality standards and is the lead agency for climate change programs.

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