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Asher Notheis, Breaking News Reporter


NextImg:California preparing to ban diesel trucks with newly approved rule

California became the first state in the United States to approve regulation of ending diesel truck sales by 2036.

The California Air Resources Board approved the regulation called Advanced Clean Fleets on Friday, continuing Gov. Gavin Newsom's (D) plan to decrease pollution in the state. The phasing out of medium and heavy-duty diesel truck sales by the year 2036 ties into the governor's plan of having all such trucks travel in California producing zero emissions by 2045, according to a statement from the governor's office.

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“The future happens here first, and California is once again showing the world what real climate action looks like," Newsom said. "Last year, our state approved one of the world’s first regulations requiring all new car sales to be zero emissions. Now, with these actions requiring all new heavy-duty truck sales to be zero emission and tackling train pollution in our state, we’re one step closer to achieving healthier neighborhoods and cleaner air for all Californians.”

California Gov. Gavin Newsom answers questions about the state's flood preparedness plan during a press conference Tuesday, April 25, 2023, in Corcoran, Calif. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)


This new regulation provides different rules for major fleet operators, with big rig trucks, local delivery, and government fleets required to transition by 2035, garbage trucks and local buses producing zero emissions by 2039, and all other vehicles the regulation covers producing zero emissions by 2042.

The new rule has not been welcomed by the trucking industry, with the American Trucking Associations issuing a statement disapproving of it. The ATA said the regulation ignores how zero-emission trucks are still early-stage technologies, and the infrastructure to support them does not exist.

“California is setting unrealistic targets and unachievable timelines that will undoubtedly lead to higher prices for the goods and services delivered to the state and fewer options for consumers," read the statement from the company's President and CEO, Chris Spear. "As it becomes clear that California’s rhetoric is not being matched by technology, we hope the Board will reverse course and allow trucking companies the freedom to choose the clean technologies that work best for their operations."

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The regulation approved on Friday also aims to reduce emissions from trains, requiring the rail transportation industry to limit idling by 2030 and requiring newly built passenger and freight trains to be zero emission by 2035.

The new regulation comes a week after President Joe Biden signed an executive order directing federal agencies to prioritize issues of "environmental justice." The order "makes clear that the pursuit of environmental justice is a duty of all executive branch agencies and should be incorporated into their missions," the White House said in a fact sheet.