When it comes to the transition to cleaner means of transportation, California has been at the forefront of efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles. Earlier this summer, the Golden State introduced a new law requiring all commercial trucks and vans sold in the state to be emission-free by 2045.
Now, as the state continues to deal with climate change-induced wildfires, California Governor Gavin Newsom has recently signed an ambitious executive order seeking to phase out the use of combustion-engine cars in the state by only allowing the sale of zero-emissions passenger vehicles by 2035.
The new legislation is part of a new package of policy changes that aim to reduce climate-warming emissions amidst another season of wildfires. As The Hill reports, the order also includes a provision to no longer issue new permits for oil and gas fracking by 2024.
“When we are looking to achieve our audacious goals to get to a 100 percent carbon-free economy by 2045, we can’t get there unless we accelerate our efforts in the transportation sector,” said Newsom on Wednesday.
“In the next 15 years, we will eliminate in the state of California the sale of internal combustion engines. We will move forward to green and decarbonize our vehicle fleet… substantially reducing greenhouse gas emissions as well as oxide nitrogen,” he added.
The governor said that the move, which was also praised by environmentalists, would help the state’s economy, citing the fact that electric vehicles are some of the state’s largest exports and that expanding this industry will boost employment opportunities.
With the urgency of the climate crisis becoming ever more prominent, let’s hope that California’s landmark decision inspires other states to follow suit.