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A waiver granted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on December 27, 2012, allowed the Amendments to the California Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Regulation to become effective immediately. California had passed the law in early 2012, but it could not become effective without the EPA waiver. Other states which currently adhere to California emissions rules may choose to adopt the same mandate as well; those states include Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The mandate requires automakers to sell zero emission vehicles, such as electric and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles along with plug-in hybrid vehicles in increasing quantities beginning in 2018. Electric and fuel cell vehicle sales get full ZEV credit, but plug-in hybrids only get partial credits based on their all-electric range. There is a cap on the share of plug-in hybrid sales that can be used to meet the mandate. In 2018, 4.5% of the manufacturer's sales must be ZEVs or a mixture of ZEVs and plug-in hybrids; by 2025, it rises to 22%.
For additional details concerning this mandate, see the California Air Resources Board Zero Emission Vehicle Program website.
Estimated Sales of Zero-Emission Vehicles under the 2012 Amended Mandate in California, 2018–2025
|Model Year||Transitional ZEVs
(Electric and/or Hydrogen Fuel Cell)
|Total ZEV Sales Requirements|
Note: Only the largest automakers are subject to the mandate: BMW, Chrysler Daimler, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Mazda, Nissan, Toyota, and Volkswagen.