California famously “banned” the private sale of new internal combustion powered vehicles by 2035. Now, the climate-conscious state seems like it’s making moves to follow up that act with another, much more consequential move — one that could ban diesel trucks by 2040!
The proposed guideline released by the California Air Resources Board (CARB), titled “Public Hearing to Consider the Proposed Advanced Clean Fleets Regulation,” was released quietly on August 30th, and is scheduled for consideration by the regulator October 27.
If it passes, the new California “diesel ban” would apply to all new medium-duty and heavy-duty commercial trucks sold in California after the 2040 model year. And the exact language used leaves precious little room for ICE fans to interpret, calling for “a clear end date” to internal combustion sales. “The proposed ACF regulation is part of a comprehensive strategy that would, consistent with public health needs, accelerate the widespread adoption of zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) in the medium- and heavy-duty truck sector and in light-duty package delivery vehicles,” it reads, in the Executive Summary section of the proposed guideline. “The proposed ACF regulation would require certain fleets to deploy ZEVs starting in 2024 and would establish a clear end date of new medium- and heavy-duty internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle sales in 2040.”
Good for Everyone
Once these guidelines go into effect, they’ll help to accelerate the deployment of zero-emission vehicles, immediately benefitting both the fleet operators who will be able to reduce the lifetime operating costs of their fleet and the communities they drive through.
This has an economic justice element to it, as well, as it is historically poorer neighborhoods that are most negatively impacted by harmful truck emissions. These are neighborhoods located near ports, warehouses, and distribution centers that are disproportionately affected by high truck traffic from medium- and heavy-duty trucks, and who suffer under the burden of long term healthcare costs associated with diesel emissions and air pollution.
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