Jerry Brown Wants to Impose ‘China-Style’ Ban on Combustion Engine Cars

Stone Age car (Korona Lacasse / Wikimedia Commons)
Korona Lacasse / Wikimedia Commons

California’s Governor Jerry Brown visited China recently and came home with a radical new idea: banning the internal combustion engine in automobiles sold in what is already the greenest state in the nation.

Bloomberg News reports:

Governor Jerry Brown has expressed an interest in barring the sale of vehicles powered by internal-combustion engines, Mary Nichols, chairman of the California Air Resources Board, said in an interview Friday at Bloomberg headquarters in New York. The earliest such a ban is at least a decade away, she said.

Brown, one of the most outspoken elected official in the U.S. about the need for policies to combat climate change, would be replicating similar moves by ChinaFrance and the U.K.

“I’ve gotten messages from the governor asking, ‘Why haven’t we done something already?’” Nichols said, referring to China’s planned phase-out of fossil-fuel vehicle sales. “The governor has certainly indicated an interest in why China can do this and not California.”

“To reach the ambitious levels of reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, we have to pretty much replace all combustion with some form of renewable energy by 2040 or 2050,” Nichols said. “We’re looking at that as a method of moving this discussion forward.”

Instituting such a policy in California would affect the entire car industry globally, due to the massive size of California’s car market. Over 2 million new passenger vehicles were sold and registered in the nation’s most populous state last year — more than than the entire nations of Spain, France and Italy.
California has had the right to write its own pollution rules since the 1970’s under waivers granted by the EPA. But it’s unlikely the Trump administration would approve such a plan, forcing California to take a different legal route.

According to Motor Trend magazine, Nichols says California is considering regulating the types of cars that can be registered in the state or have access to highways.

“We certainly wouldn’t expect to get a waiver for that from the EPA,” she told Bloomberg. “I think we would be looking at using some of our other authorities to get that result.”

China plans to end sales of combustion engine vehicles in 2030. Other countries like France and the U.K. plan to follow suit a decade later.

California has not yet specified a date to copy China’s policy.

Tim Donnelly is a former California State Assemblyman and Author, currently on a book tour for his new book: Patriot Not Politician: Win or Go Homeless.  He also ran for governor in 2014.


Twitter:  @PatriotNotPol


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