Yesterday, June 25, 2020, the California Air Resources Board CARB) announced a ground-breaking development in the push for cleaner air. The board voted unanimously in favor of the first national standard for electric trucks. It's also the first of its type in the world.
Essentially, the new rule would require manufacturers to switch from diesel trucks and vans to zero-emission electric trucks beginning in 2024. Then, the manufacturers would have about 20 years to transition their entire lineups to zero-emission vehicles. The CARB standard says all new trucks sold in the state by 2045 must be emissions-free.
This bold move comes at a time that we've seen the results of having fewer cars on the road and reduced emissions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. It also comes on the heels of nationwide protests related to systemic racism. Calfornia has long been a leader when it comes to green energy, green jobs, and clean air. Now, this standard takes another step forward in setting a precedent. CARB writes:
"Many California neighborhoods, especially Black and Brown, low-income and vulnerable communities, live, work, play and attend schools adjacent to the ports, railyards, distribution centers, and freight corridors and experience the heaviest truck traffic. This new rule directly addresses disproportionate risks and health and pollution burdens affecting these communities ... "