I came across an article last week from The Sacramento Bee (1) that discusses an initiative backed by eight governors to put 3.3 million zero-emission vehicles on the roadways within a dozen years. According to this article, California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont (the states of the governors involved in the initiative) make up nearly 25 percent of the U.S. vehicle market.

This team of governors aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, improve air quality and public health, foster energy diversity, create consumer savings and promote economic growth with zero-emission vehicles (ZEV’s). New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo believes that this ZEV initiative could positively impact our environment and settle some discrepancies between the human race and Mother Nature.  Greenhouse gas emissions contribute to global warming which scientists say is linked to an increase in frequency and severity of natural disasters in all corners of the world.

Officials will be developing an action plan over the next six months. This plan will include the production of more fueling stations for these vehicles. Gov. Jerry Brown of California recently signed Assembly Bill 8 which will provide funding for the turnover of older vehicles and development of advanced, environmentally friendly technologies. This plan is projected to “provide funding for at least 100 hydrogen stations with a commitment of up to $20 million a year from the California Energy Commission’s Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program.”

According to an EPA article titled “Carbon Dioxide Emissions” (2), transportation accounted for 31% of U.S. carbon dioxide emissions and 26% of all U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2011. These numbers put the transportation industry in a position to make a huge impact on the improvement of our environment.

“The most effective way to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions is to reduce fossil fuel consumption,” states the EPA article. The ZEV plan is just one of many initiatives aimed at reducing transportation related greenhouse gas emissions. Other initiatives include advancements in alternative energy technologies, changes in regulations, and educating the public on the issues and solutions. It is exciting to see the effort being put forth by the transportation industry to get all hands on deck for a greener environment.
(1) “Business.” The Sacramento Bee. N.p., n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2013. <http://www.sacbee.com/2013/10/24/5846838/brown-governors-of-seven-other.html>.

(2) “Carbon Dioxide Emissions.” EPA. Environmental Protection Agency, n.d. Web. 25 Oct. 2013. http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/ghgemissions/gases/co2.html.