March 16, 2021
By putting the squeeze on tailpipe emissions, Virginia is prepping to merge into an electric-vehicle fast lane dominated by California, New York, Maryland and other green pacesetters.
Conservationists, health advocates and even some car dealers are cheered that Virginia has become the first in the South — and the 15th overall — to adopt legislation directing automakers to deliver higher inventories of cleaner, fuel-efficient, and electric light- and medium-duty vehicles to the state
“This is groundbreaking legislation for Virginia,” transportation specialist Trip Pollard said about the General Assembly green-lighting Clean Cars Virginia. “It’s the single largest step Virginia has taken to cut carbon emissions.” [...]
Nationwide, transportation began outpacing power as the leading emitter of heat-trapping gases several years ago. Still, at an estimated 48%, Virginia tailpipe emissions are unusually high.
A January study for the Georgetown Climate Center estimates unclogging a bottleneck on low- and zero-emissions vehicles statewide will reduce emissions by some 48 million metric tons by 2040. That’s the equivalent of taking more than 10 million gasoline-powered vehicles off the Virginia roadways for a year.