FRIDAY, MARCH 28, 2008
THE BLOG OF THE RAINFOREST ACTION NETWORK

Zero Emissions Vehicles Terminated

Yesterday in a bold move backwards, California's Air Resource Board (CARB) voted to kill the electric car. Again. Bowing to automaker pressure. Again. Ignoring the concerns of California's citizens. Again. CARB reviews what is known as the Zero Emission Vehicle Program every 5 years. At one time, this cutting edge program pushed automakers to produce innovative pollution-free, petroleum-free electric vehicles like GM's EV1, Toyota's RAV4 EV, and Ford's EV version of the Ranger pickup truck. 5 years ago when CARB last reviewed the program, they eviscerated the requirements, to which the automakers responded by terminating their EV programs. Most EVs had been leased, rather than sold - and at the end of the leases, the automakers began taking the cars back and crushing them. Ironically, today the EVs sell for astronomical prices on EBAY, the only place left where you can go to buy a Toyota or Ford EV. Yesterday morning, automakers were required to produce 25,000 zero emission vehicles by 2014. But by the end of the day, CARB had voted to reduce the number of zero emission vehicles that the automakers are required produce to a paltry 7,500. Our regulators that are supposed to be looking out for everyone's future, not just the automakers - but in California it's the same old story. Once again, Ford, GM, Toyota and company are off the hook. And everyone who suffers from oil addiction and global warming will be paying the price.

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