Do you think there won’t be any more gas-powered vehicles produced by 2040? One California lawmaker would like to make that happen in his state.
The Sacramento Bee reported that California State Assemblyman Phil Ting will be introducing a bill to the state legislature designed to regulated gas-powered vehicles. It would "ban the sale of new cars fueled by internal-combustion engines after 2040,” said the Sacramento Bee.
Ting, a Democrat from San Francisco, thinks it’s time for the government to step in and compel consumers to buy electric cars. He sees that the market has failed to convince consumers to buy electric cars, so Ting thinks the government should force them into making the transition from gas to electric.
“The market is moving this way. The entire world is moving this way,” said Ting, referencing legislation on gas-powered cars in France, the U.K., and India.
He continued, talking about his bill, which will be proposed in January, “At some point, you need to set a goal and put a line in the sand.”
This isn’t the first time California has tried to push their residents towards electric cars. In 2012, California pledged to put 1.5 million “zero-emission vehicles,” on the road by 2025. That includes electric cars and plug-in hybrids. They also want zero-emission vehicles to account for 15% of all new car sales by 2025.
But things haven’t exactly gone their way. This year approximately 300,000 zero-emission vehicles have now been sold in California. That accounts for just 5% of new car sales in the state, said the Bee.
That’s because some people are still waiting for the batteries to improve on the electric cars. Others still want to drive a truck or an SUV, which don’t come in electric models.
Ting, along with other California legislators, hopes to incentivize electric cars. He hopes to do this by an “overhaul [of] California’s electric car rebate program by making more money available for rebates, then ratcheting down the value of those discounts as the state hits sales targets,” he told the Bee.
“California is used to being first. But we’re trying to catch up to this,” Ting said.
If this proposal passes, then California would fall in line behind France and the United Kingdom, who both announced bans on the sale of new gas and diesel vehicles after 2040. India made a similar announcement, but they’re aiming for a ban in 2030. Even China said they would stop the production and sale of vehicles powered solely by fossil fuels in the coming years.
California’s governor, Jerry Brown, wants them to be right behind these nations. Mary Nichols, chair of the California Air Resources Board, shared his sentiments.
“I’ve gotten messages from the governor asking, ‘Why haven’t we done something already?’ The governor has certainly indicated an interest in why China can do this and not California,” she said to Bloomberg.
Of course, people all over the U.S. are responding with skepticism and derision. Americans don’t react well to having their personal liberty infringed upon, and they certainly don’t want someone in the government telling them which car they can buy.
Still, Ting is pushing forward, and he seemed to try to decrease the blow. He inferred that the ban might not even matter in 2040 because we might not be driving cars in 2040.
“If you had told me five years ago that we might have autonomous vehicles on the road soon, I would have laughed,” he said. “The technology is moving so quickly. I don’t know if by 2040, we’ll be owning our own cars,” said Ting.
What do you think? Would you switch to an electric car if the government funded it, or do you prefer to drive a gas-powered car? Let us know in the comments.
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