Toughest-ever US truck emissions laws proposed
TOUGH NEW LAWS AIMED AT reducing air pollution in California – the state with America’s worst air quality – call for manufacturers to dramatically increase the number of zero-emissions trucks sold there within the next 15 years.
Proposed regulations that will be the toughest in the United States if adopted by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) this month, call for at least 40% of all heavy commercial tractor units sold in the state by 2035 to have zero emissions.
Tougher still is the requirement for light commercials: Three in every four light delivery trucks and vans sold will have to be emissionsfree by the same deadline. And 55% of all pickup trucks sold will have to be zero emissions.
If adopted, the regulations will mean that by 2035, an estimated 20% of all trucks on Californian roads will have zero emissions.
The proposal was dramatically beefed-up last month from the truck emissions measures CARB had been considering, which would have resulted in an estimated 4% of all trucks being emissions free.
Environmental groups, who protested that the lower emissions-free vehicle targets were not tough enough, say the proposed new standards will be “transformative.”
Until now truck manufacturers have avoided regulations setting emissions-free vehicle ratios
– even though California has imposed them on cars and SUVs. They have argued successfully that truck operators must be able to run vehicles profitably – and the added cost of electric trucks make that difficult.
The California Trucking Association, while not officially opposing the rule (since it applies to manufacturers), says it is “disheartening to see regulations get stricter when the economy is in freefall and businesses are in survival mode.”
Two of the world’s biggest ports are located in Los Angeles and nearby Long Beach and are serviced by thousands of trucks, running freight to and from the so-called Inland Empire – the sprawling metropolitan area east of LA.