Amid an aggressive push by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) to meet federal ozone pollution requirements, the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission late last week adopted a zero-emission vehicle standard. The move aims to achieve the cleanest air practical in every part of the state and to cut greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.
The new zero-emission standard requires automakers to sell more than 5 percent zero-emission vehicles by 2023 and more than 6 percent zero-emission vehicles by 2025. The standard is based on a matrix of credits given for each electric vehicle sold, depending on the vehicle’s zero-emission range. The new requirement does not require consumers to purchase electric vehicles, but experts say it will result in manufacturers selling a wider range of models in Colorado, including SUVs and light trucks.
“We are charged up and ready to roll. The adoption of the zero-emission vehicle standard is a clear demonstration of our unrelenting commitment to making sure every Coloradan has clean air to breathe,” said CDPHE Executive Director Jill Hunsaker Ryan.
“We are committed to a state where Coloradans can zip up the mountains in a zero-emitting vehicle and go for a hike without coughing and wheezing from ozone,” added CDPHE Environmental Programs Director John Putnam. “We’ve made a lot of progress on cleaning up our air over the past several years, but the standards are getting more stringent. We have to rise to the challenge.”