New York Will Ban Gas Car Sales, Following California’s Lead

The 2022 Hyundai IONIQ 5 electric car driving down a road in front of trees.
Hyundai

California recently laid out a plan to end the sales of new gas-only cars by 2035, as electric cars and hybrids become more easily accessible, and climate change continues to get worse. The state of New York has now announced similar plans.

Governor Kathy Hochul of New York has directed the State Department of Environmental Conservation to require “all new passenger cars, pickup trucks, and SUVs” to be zero-emission by the year 2035. Notably, that rule only applies to the sale of new vehicles — sales of used gas cars can continue, and gas cars are not barred from driving on roads. However, the state is also planning “new pollutant standards” for light-duty gas trucks and medium-duty gas vehicles, which could also impact which cars can be sold or registered in New York.

New York said in a press release, “Proposing draft State regulations is a crucial step to further electrify the transportation sector and help New York achieve its climate requirement of reducing greenhouse gases 85 percent by 2050, while also reducing air pollution, particularly in disadvantaged communities.”

The new guidelines follow the same exact timeline as California. Zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) must account for at least 35% of all car sales from a given manufacturer in 2026, with the percentage increasingly slightly each year afterwards. ZEVs must be at least 68% of sales by 2030, and finally 100% by 2035. New York attempted similar legislation in the late 1990s and early 2000s, starting with 2% of sales in 2002. The plan was delayed and later thrown out, due to a combination of political lobbying from auto makers and limited battery technology.

New York’s announcement didn’t explicitly mention if plug-in hybrid vehicles, which have combustion engines in addition to rechargeable batteries, are included in the ban. Hybrids are usually lumped in with ZEVs, despite the fact that they can emit greenhouse gasses, but we’ve reached out to the state of New York to confirm. We will update this article when (or if) we get a response.

The state is also kicking off new rebate programs for zero-emission vehicles and grants for charging infrastructure, under the “EV Make Ready” initiative. Electric cars aren’t practical without the required charging infrastructure, so it’s great to see governments focus on that, too.

Source: New York