California, does thy nutballery ever end? Now the Golden (hah) State is considering outlawing gasoline or diesel-powered cars. Excerpt:
The head of the California Air Resources Board told Bloomberg News that the state is seriously looking into whether and how to make internal combustion engine cars illegal in the state, as part of its self-imposed plan to cut state CO2 emissions in 2050 to 80% of what it emitted in 1990.
That follows announcements over the summer that the UK and France will try to ban the sale of gas- and diesel-powered cars by 2040. More recently, China claims it will impose a ban in 2030.
The CARB’s Mary Nichols says California could implement such a ban in 13 years, and one state lawmaker plans to introduce a bill that would enforce it in 2040.
To put it bluntly, this is one of the most ill-conceived public policy ideas in a state that seems to have them in abundance.
First, some perspective.
According to the EPA, all transportation — cars, trucks, planes, trains and boats — are responsible for about a quarter of the nation’s CO2 emissions. The share contributed by passenger cars alone is considerably smaller than that. In the European Union, for example, cars account for 12% of CO2 emissions.
California’s move would make no noticeable dent in global CO2 emissions. Plus, it would take well over a decade before the entire car fleet turned over to all electric.
What’s more, the CO2 reduction claims from such a ban are wildly exaggerated.
Remember, electric cars don’t run on magic. They run on electricity. So forcing car owners to buy only electric cars will mean a massive surge in demand for electricity, which is generated largely by greenhouse-emitting natural gas and coal. In California, these fuel sources account for 40% of the state’s electricity. Solar and wind add up to just 17%.
Much of the CO2 “cuts” will really just be a shift from one source to another.
Here’s a consideration that the article doesn’t mention; how much of California’s economy depends on tourism, and how many of those tourists drive into that state? If those people drive into California after the ban, will they find any gasoline stations to greet them, or will they be barred from bringing their faithful benzene-burners into the state? What will that do to California’s economy?
Maybe whoever dreamed this piece of nitwittery up just believes in putting everybody afoot; perhaps they think there will be less mischief that way.
I don’t really care what China and France do in this regard. But California has just produced another dumb idea in a long list of dumb ideas.