Zero-emission trucks are coming a long way in capability. A pair of Paccar zero-emission trucks — a Kenworth T680 fuel cell electric vehicle and a battery-electric Peterbilt Model 579EV — became the first heav-duty zero-emissions vehicles to drive to the 14,115-foot summit of Pikes Peak in Colorado. - Photo: Paccar

Zero-emission trucks are coming a long way in capability. A pair of Paccar zero-emission trucks — a Kenworth T680 fuel cell electric vehicle and a battery-electric Peterbilt Model 579EV — became the first heav-duty zero-emissions vehicles to drive to the 14,115-foot summit of Pikes Peak in Colorado.

Photo: Paccar

The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz) Feb. 1 announced the publication of the Zero Emission Vehicle Market Development Strategy (ZEV Strategy), according to a state press release.  

Developed in partnership with the Air Resources Board (CARB), Energy Commission (CEC), Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), State Transportation Agency (CalSTA), Department of Finance and other key state agencies, local agencies, and private sector stakeholders, the ZEV Strategy is meant to help accelerate the ZEV marketplace to deliver the climate and air quality benefits of zero-emissions to all Californians. 

"California is creating an opportunity for cleaner air, better mobility, and strong economic recovery," Gov. Gavin Newsom said in a statement. "ZEVs have the potential to deliver on all of these goals while also helping to lead our economic recovery. That’s because our ZEV strategy is centered around our state’s most important asset: people." 

In September 2020, Newsom issued an executive order with the following targets:

  • 100% of in-state sales of new passenger cars and trucks will be zero-emission by 2035.
  • 100% of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles in the state will be zero-emission by 2045 and by 2035 for drayage trucks.
  • 100% of off-road vehicles and equipment will be zero-emission by 2035.  

The transportation sector is responsible for nearly half of all of California’s carbon pollution, 80% of smog-forming pollution, and 95% of toxic diesel emissions. This newly announced ZEV Strategy outlines how state agencies and public and private market partners can move together with the scale and speed required to eliminate the need for combustion.

"We have long known why transitioning to ZEVs is a necessity," said Tyson Eckerle, deputy director of GO-Biz’s ZEV Market Development. "With Governor Newsom’s leadership, we have a shared target for when. The ZEV Strategy is about how. The effort is built around the innovative and collaborative spirit of California, and we look forward to continuing to work with our partners, learning and modifying as we go through time." 

CARB Chair Liane M. Randolph said, "We can protect public health, meet federal air quality standards and clean up our most polluted communities by shifting the entire transportation sector to zero-emission technologies. The ZEV Strategy provides the roadmap for the crucial role of market development to electrify how we move people and goods."

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