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New Jersey Could Join California in Banning New Gas-Powered Car Sales

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【Summary】New Jersey’s Department of Environment Protection released a Global Warming Response Act Report that provides a clear look at what the state needs to do to meet its climate goals.

Original Vineeth Joel Patel    Oct 26, 2020 7:45 AM PT
New Jersey Could Join California in Banning New Gas-Powered Car Sales

Emissions regulations and tightening fuel economy standards are key reasons for the push toward electric vehicles. Gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles are negatively affecting the environment, and while the current crop of electric vehicles aren't perfect alternatives to fossil-powered cars, they're kinder to the environment and help states, countries, and cities reach important air quality goals. That's why a lot of cities around the world have banned gas-powered cars from entering or have started to charge drivers behind the wheel of gas-powered cars to enter certain locations.

New Jersey To Follow California

While the U.S. has taken a few steps back by rolling back fuel economy regulations, California made a bold choice by banning the sale of new gas-powered vehicles in the state by 2035. It was the first step taken by a U.S. state to really curb emissions. Now, it looks like New Jersey could institute a similar plan.

New Jersey's Department of Environment Protection released its Global Warming Response Act Report, which outlines emissions goals and a plan on what the state needs to do to reach its goals. The main goal, as the report lays out, is to decrease C02 emissions by 80 percent by 2050. The goal is being called "80x50" and is a part of the state's 2019 Energy Master Plan and Governor Phil Murphy's vision of having 100 percent clean energy by 2050.

To reach its 80x50 goal, New Jersey's going to have to make some drastic changes. According to data in the report, the transportation sector represents the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the state. The transportation sector is responsible for 42 percent of greenhouse gas emissions alone. For comparison's sake, residential and commercial sectors (combined) account for 26 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. Of the large part of the pie of the transportation sector, gasoline-powered vehicles account for approximately 70 percent of the transportation sector's emissions.

More EVs Need To Be Sold

To achieve the new 80x50 goal, the state believes that 88 percent of its light-duty vehicle sales will have to come from electric or hydrogen-powered vehicles by 2030. By 2035, the state is looking for that figure to grow to 100 percent. Since hydrogen isn't popular outside of California, it looks like EVs are the way forward.

Obviously, banning the sale of new gas-powered vehicles is a radical approach. But if states and countries want to reach their lofty emissions goals and curb global warming, radical ideas are the only ones that will work. With electric vehicles continuing to cost a lot more than the average gas-powered car, asking consumers to purchase an EV without any incentives is a large ask. California and New Jersey can try to do their part by banning the sales of new gas-powered cars, but curbing emissions is a task that needs to be approached from a federal level.

"Currently, New Jerseyans purchase more than 500,000 fossil fuel powered passenger vehicles annually and existing policies and programs are not sufficient by themselves to achieve the levels of mark penetration necessary to transform the transportation sector," reads the report

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