California regulators could ban the sale of diesel commercial trucks by 2040 as the state seeks to phase out gas-powered vehicles in the coming decades in an effort to combat climate change.
The California Air Resources Board staff is proposing a measure that would require medium and heavy-duty trucks entering ports and rail yards must be zero emission by 2035 and that state and local government fleets do so by 2027, the Los Angeles Times reported.
“It would be the next significant step in accelerating towards a zero-emission (ZE) transportation system as well as a more equitable future in California,” the proposal said.
The board is expected to consider it Oct. 27.
The proposal follows a board vote in August that would halt the sale of gas-powered cars by 2035 in an effort to fight climate change.
“There is no infrastructure to support this,” Chris Shimoda, vice president of the California Trucking Assn., told the newspaper.
The phasing out of gas vehicles would put pressure on state leaders to move quickly to prepare for the millions of electric vehicles that will travel on the state’s roadways without much interruption.
In addition, the proposal would change how the American trucking industry does business. The diesel truck is known to be cheap, easy to run, durable and able to carry tons of cargo, the report said.
The price paid by communities near ports or warehouses where such trucks operate has been high. The smog from diesel engines has been linked to cancer, asthma and other ailments. Under the proposal, Amazon, Walmart and other companies would have until 2042 to convert their trucks in the state to zero-emissions.
The state regulators wrote they had “legal and moral obligations” to lessen the pollution that has been left by the trucks in many vulnerable communities.