Row of Electrify America Ev Charging Stations rated for 150kw and 350 kw. Maryland in September 2019.
Source – Ken Fields, CC SA 2.0.
Seventeen states that tie their vehicle emission standards to rules established in California must decide whether to follow that state’s strict new rules.
As many readers will recall, on August 25, the Associated Press reported that California set itself on a path to end the era of gas-powered cars, with air regulators adopting the world’s most stringent rules for transitioning to zero-emission vehicles.
The move by the California Air Resources Board to have all new cars, pickup trucks and SUVs be electric or hydrogen by 2035 is likely to reshape the U.S. auto market, which gets 10 percent of its sales from the nation’s most populous state.
So under the Clean Air Act, states must abide by the federal government’s standard vehicle emissions standards unless they at least partially opt to follow California’s stricter requirements.
The States shown above have adopted California’s Low-Emission Vehicle (LEV) criteria pollutant and greenhouse gas (GHG) emission regulations and Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) regulations under Section 177 of the Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. §7507) beginning with the model year (MY) as shown below. Table current as of May 13, 2022.
Among them, Washington, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon and Vermont are expected to adopt California’s ban on new gasoline-fueled vehicles. Colorado and Pennsylvania are among the states that probably won’t. The legal ground is a bit murkier in Minnesota, where the state’s “Clean Cars” rule has been a political minefield and the subject of a legal fight. Meanwhile, Republicans are rebelling in Virginia.
Accordeing to the San Francisco Examiner, the Minnesota Auto Dealers Association says its reading of state and federal law is that the new California rules kick in automatically in the state, and it’s making that case in court as it tries to block them.
“The technology is such that the vehicles just don’t perform that well in cold weather,” said Scott Lambert, the trade group’s president. “We don’t all live in southern California.”
Oregon regulators are taking public comments through Sept. 7 on whether to adopt the new California standards. Colorado regulators, who adopted California’s older rules, won’t follow California’s new ones, the administration of Democratic Gov. Jared Polis said.
“While the governor shares the goal of rapidly moving towards electric vehicles, he is skeptical about requiring 100% of cars sold to be electric by a certain date as technology is rapidly changing,” the Colorado Energy Office said in a statement.
Virginia had been on a path to adopting California’s rules under legislation that passed last year when Democrats were in full control of Virginia’s government. But Republicans who control the House of Delegates and GOP Gov. Glenn Youngkin say they’ll push to unlink their state.