California Clean-car Policy Shift Expected
regulators will decide this month whether to stick with California's struggling zero-emissions vehicle program or all but abandon it in favor of gasoline-electric hybrids and ultra-efficient gasoline engines.
The shift would essentially abandon the California Air Resources Board's goal of placing large numbers of nonpolluting vehicles on the street this decade. Instead, it seeks a nominal amount of clean cars -- presumably equipped with fuel cells -- by the end of the decade and would wait for automakers to develop a marketable car with no emissions presumably by 2012 or later.
Exact language is expected today, and automakers say they are encouraged by drafts they have seen.
So are some environmentalists, who see the push for new technologies required by hybrids and ultraclean gasoline engines as good for both the environment now and fuel cells in the future.
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