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State announces plan to ban gas car sales by 2035: 'This program is literally life-saving'

The burning of dirty energy sources like gasoline and diesel contributes to a warming planet.

The burning of dirty energy sources like gasoline and diesel contributes to a warming planet.

Photo Credit: iStock

New Jersey has just made a commitment to clean up its act when it comes to transportation, requiring all new car sales to be electric by 2035.

This is part of a series of regulations collectively called "Advanced Clean Cars II," which will also require 51% of all new car sales to be electric in 2027.

Climate advocates say the regulations will result in 90,000 more EVs on New Jersey's roads by 2030. This is a win for clean air, especially for the state's most vulnerable communities.

"Unfortunately, New Jersey's environmental justice communities are intertwined in very congested roadways." said Anjuli Ramos-Busot, the New Jersey Sierra Club chapter director, per NJ.com. "Us being positioned as a transportation hub in between two major cities like New York City and Philadelphia, this program is literally life-saving."

It will also be a win for the environment. The burning of dirty energy sources like gasoline and diesel contributes to a warming planet, and transportation is the biggest culprit of this pollution in the U.S. Meanwhile, transportation pollution accounts for more than a third of New Jersey's planet-warming air pollution.

When the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection asked residents their opinions about the regulations during a public comment period, it received a mix of concerned and enthusiastic responses. 

On one hand, some people were worried about the lack of charging infrastructure in the state. "This is not really an issue (for) individual homeowners with private chargers. However, for those living in multi-family dwellings…," one person commented

This concern was echoed by state Sen. Steven Oroho, R-Sussex, who said New Jersey's electric grid was already struggling to meet demand. However, some environmentalists have argued that the grid will be improved to handle the demand over time. 

Plus, automakers like BMW, Honda, and General Motors, have committed to installing 30,000 new electric vehicle chargers across the United States. Many national chains like Subway, Walmart, IKEA, Kroger, and Target are also building up their EV infrastructure.

Other people could not help but comment on the positive environmental impacts the upcoming regulations will have. 

"N.J. air is so much worse than 10 years ago," one person said. "All vehicles need to be battery operated — not just automobiles." 

"Delay of widespread adoption of Advanced Clean Cars in New Jersey will hurt the health and daily functions of people, living beings, and natural systems," another commented.

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