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Virginia AG Confirms Commonwealth Is Bound by California’s Gas-Powered Vehicle Ban

  • Virginia AG Jason Miyares has confirmed that Virginia will be legally bound by a recent California rulemaking banning the sale of new gasoline-powered cars by 2035. As a result of legislation passed in 2021 by the Virginia General Assembly (then controlled by Democrats), Virginia is required to adopt the same automobile standards as those promulgated by the California Air Resources Board (CARB).
  • The California law, which requires EPA approval to implement, does not apply to used vehicles, or existing gas-powered cars. Virginia is not the only state that has elected to follow CARB’s automobile standards. Indeed, Virginia is one of fifteen states that adopted an earlier CARB standard regarding tailpipe emissions.  Republicans, including Governor Glenn Youngkin, have opposed the rule publically and are reported to be working to prevent it from taking effect.
  • By contrast, the Virginia Auto Dealers Association has supported the rule as part of an effort to ensure that dealers have an adequate supply of in-demand electric vehicles. Virginia consumers have complained in recent years about the unavailability of electric vehicles due to manufacturers prioritizing deliveries to dealers in states aligned with California’s standards.