The Future of California is All-Electric
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) passed the Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II) rule. It will transition the state to 100% zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) sales by 2035. The adoption of the ACC II rule follows a 2020 executive order from Governor Newsom calling for this transition. Sierra Club California, along with numerous other environmental NGOs and environmental justice organizations, has advocated for years for electrifying our transportation sector, and this rule will accelerate that transition. Several other states across the country are also poised to adopt the ACC II rule in the coming months.
Millions of Californians live in communities with unhealthy air that does not meet federal air quality standards. Light-duty transportation is responsible for a tenth of the state’s smog-forming NOx emissions. That’s in addition to more than a quarter of its greenhouse gas emissions. Transitioning this sector to zero emissions will prevent heart and lung disease, save lives, and slow the climate crisis.
Many members of the public note that the ACC II rule does not contain sufficient provisions. Moreover, it doesn’t ensure that ZEVs are in frontline communities that bear the brunt of air pollution impacts. In adopting the rule, CARB commits to continuing to work with stakeholders. The goal is to ensure that zero-emission cars are accessible to communities that need them the most.
Moreover, other states can adopt the ACC II rule, which is more stringent than the federal clean car standards. Fifteen states have fully adopted California’s ACC I rule and many of those states will adopt ACC II.
Statement from Daniel Barad, Sierra Club California Senior Policy Advocate:
“The Advanced Clean Cars II rule is a major step towards breathable air in California communities and will be critical for the state to meet its climate goals and federal air quality standards. Other states should move swiftly to join California and adopt this life-saving rule, which will improve air quality and slow the climate crisis.
“CARB still has much work to do to ensure that this rule benefits frontline communities who need emission reductions the most. Sierra Club California will be working closely with our environmental justice partners to advance a just and equitable transition to zero-emission transportation.”