Image source does not exist News Release: 2011-12-07 California Air Resources Board Releases Proposed Advanced Clean Car Rules

Release #:11-52

ARB PIO: (916) 322-2990

Stanley Young
David Clegern

California Air Resources Board Releases Proposed Advanced Clean Car Rules

Proposed rules will save drivers money at the pump, cut smog and greenhouse gases, make California a world leader in clean car technology

SACRAMENTO - Today the California Air Resources Board posted the proposed Advanced Clean Car package of regulations in advance of the Board’s meeting to consider adoption on January 26, 2012.

The proposal continues California’s leadership role in developing innovative standards for vehicles that are designed to clean the air, fight climate change, and deliver real cost savings to consumers and drive job development in California.

“These rules will make California the advanced car capital of the world, driving the innovation, patents and technology that will generate thousands of jobs here, and set the stage for us to compete in the global clean car marketplace,” said ARB Executive Officer James N. Goldstene.

The Advanced Clean Cars program combines the control of soot, smog-causing pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions into a single coordinated package of requirements for model years 2017 through 2025.  The proposed rules will clean up gasoline- and diesel-powered cars, and deliver increasing numbers of zero-emission vehicles, such as full battery electric cars, newly emerging plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell cars. The package also includes provisions that will ensure adequate fueling infrastructure is available for the increasing numbers of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles planned for deployment in California.

The proposed rules are designed to ensure the development of environmentally superior cars with a full range of models, from compacts to SUVs and pickups that will continue to deliver the performance, utility, and safety vehicle owners have come to expect with significant savings thanks to reduced operating costs. When fully implemented, annual fuel costs to operate a car will be reduced by an average of 25 percent, with an overall cumulative savings of $22 billion by 2025.

Greenhouse gas emissions from cars will be cut 34 percent from 2016 levels. Many of the technologies that reduce climate change emissions also significantly reduce the operating costs of passenger vehicles on a month-to-month basis for consumers. ARB analysis indicates that the advanced technologies used to achieve the new smog and greenhouse gas standards will increase a new vehicle’s price in 2025 by about $1,900, a sum more than offset by $6,000 in fuel cost savings over the life of the car. This will reduce the monthly cost of a new car by $12, even when considering the higher cost of the loan or lease.

ARB economic analysis indicates that the overall savings generated by the proposed rules will result in an additional 21,000 jobs in California in 2025, rising to 37,000 in 2030. 

The proposed Advanced Clean Cars package of regulations is designed to deliver: 

A summary of the Advanced Clean Cars regulations is at: .

The proposed rules can be found at:

 - Please cut and paste link if not operating correctly on your browser -

Beginning on Monday, December 12, 2011 comments on the proposed regulations can be submitted at:


The Advanced Clean Car Program:

The proposed Advanced Clean Car program has been in development over the past three years and is composed of four separate but related components:
  1. Greenhouse gas standard for cars and light trucks, model years 2017-2025
    This regulation builds on California’s first-in-the-nation greenhouse gas standard that was later adopted by the federal government as part of a national program.  The current proposal to strengthen the greenhouse gas standard for 2017 models and beyond was developed in tandem with the federal government over the past three years including an unprecedented joint fact-finding process with shared engineering and technical studies. The current California program constitutes a separate set of rules with minor variations due to separate legal structures but is designed to parallel the proposed joint rulemaking the Obama administration announced last month.  As a result, California has given auto manufacturers a single national program combining greenhouse gas and fuel economy standards that responds to the desire for a streamlined set of rules for new cars and light trucks.

    The proposed new standard drops greenhouse gas emissions to 166 grams per mile, a reduction of 34 percent compared to 2016 levels. This will be achieved through existing technologies (such as hybrid cars), the use of stronger and lighter materials, and more efficient drivetrains and engines.

  2. Reducing Smog-Forming Emissions
    California will need to reduce smog-forming pollution by an additional 75 percent from 2014 levels to help meet more stringent federal air quality standards expected in the next few years. Since California continues to have the nation’s worst air quality, and has more than 26 million cars on the road, it is necessary to further reduce smog-forming pollution from cars. This regulation will drive the development of the cleanest cars yet that use diesel, gasoline-powered, or typical gas-electric hybrid internal combustion engines.  (Note: The above two proposed regulations are bundled into a single document under the title “LEVIII “.)

  3.  Zero Emissions Vehicle Regulation
    This regulation builds on the program in place since 1990 and is designed to rapidly increase ZEV production to early commercial volumes, establishing a sustainable and growing market for these advanced technology vehicles. This will place California on a path to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, a goal adopted by many nations and believed necessary to stabilize climate temperature. The ZEV amendments include a provision that allows automakers that substantially over comply with their national GHG emission requirements across their entire fleet to offset their ZEV requirement.

    The ZEV regulation will result in 1.4 million ZEVs on the road by 2025 (15.4 percent of new vehicle sales in that year) in order to be on track to reach the 2050 greenhouse gas reduction goal. A transitional model – the plug-in hybrid car – will play a significant role over the next twenty years but by mid-century, 87 percent of cars on the road will need to be full zero-emission vehicles to achieve climate goals.

  4. Clean Fuel Outlets
    This regulation is designed to support the commercialization of zero-emission hydrogen fuel cell vehicles planned by five vehicle manufacturers by 2015 by requiring the construction of hydrogen fueling stations. Construction of the new stations will provide a convenient fueling infrastructure, first within the major air basins but ultimately throughout the state. The number of stations will expand as vehicle manufacturers sell more fuel cell vehicles.

ARB's mission is to promote and protect public health, welfare, and ecological resources through effective reduction of air pollutants while recognizing and considering effects on the economy. The ARB oversees all air pollution control efforts in California to attain and maintain health based air quality standards.