Dana Hull, writing for San Jose Mercury News, notes that California has cemented the position of the state as a global leader in the use of electric cars. In August 2014, it became the first state to have more than 100, 000 electric cars and plug ins running on its road. The major reason behind this achievement is the solid government support that the residents of California have enjoyed through the provision of a variety of incentives.
Why California is Such a Great Place for Electric Cars
The Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) was funded at a total of US $ 4.1 million. It was initiated by the California Environmental Protection Agency- Air Resources Board. The mandate of the board was to promote the use of zero emission vehicles throughout the state. It was signed by the then governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2007. The applicants receive assistance on a first come first served basis and it will ran through 2015. The eligible vehicles in the program include battery electric, plug-in hybrid electric, and neighborhood electric vehicles.
There is a money for transit that is available to residents of California who scrap an old and dirty car but choose not to replace in addition to payments based on junking smog-producing vehicles. Depending on one’s level of income, the beneficiary is eligible for a public transit pass that is valued at $ 2, 500 to $ 4,500. The state has laid a plan to put one million electric vehicles on the road. Thus, it is encouraging the support of disadvantaged communities through the rebates.
China and California has been working together on many areas concerning renewable energy. In fact, Ross Perlin, writing for the China Dialogue calls the duo the clean energy comrades. For instance, in April 2008, the two converged in San Francisco to discuss key areas of cooperation in renewable energy. In 2005, Arnold Schwarzenegger visited Beijing and raised the issue of energy and climate concerns with China’s top officials.
A closer look at both California and China shows that they have a lot that they share in common concerning dirty energy. They have had to face the harsh reality of grappling with a lot of greenhouse emissions. On one hand, China is only second to the United States in terms of greenhouse emissions. In fact, some Chinese cities are filled with smog and have a direct and adverse health impact on residents. On the other hand, whereas some states in the United States such as the District of Columbia have very low carbon footprint, California is the second largest when it comes to greenhouse emissions (in tie with Pennsylvania and behind Texas). The state contributes a whooping 6.42 % of the total US greenhouse emissions.
We California to keep challenging what we think can be done.
Were it not for the incentives, California would not be a shining example of practical incentives that work in making the use of electric cars a reality. China and California may have faced the negative impact of dirty energy, but they are miles apart in the use of renewable energy.
China is still behind in making concrete energy changes that shows that it is walking the talk. China has made positive steps though, but it has a lot to learn from California on optimal use of renewable energy and electric cars.