The most populous state in the United States is also well known for its green stance, with Mary Nichols, the regulator that also showed the world how to get rid of smog, now pushing for all cars to be powered by electricity.
Automakers all around the world are selling electric vehicles today but they don’t really make a profit out of them – even though they’re utterly expensive compared to the internal combustion engine rivals. They do that because regulators have been pushing for greener transportation for years and upcoming fuel economy and emission regulators around the world will be out of reach because of them. One promoter of the trend is Mary Nichols, the leader of the California Air Resources Board since 2007, which has been pushing for the state’s well known zero-emission-vehicle policy and has been prominent backer of Pres¬ident Barack Obama’s national goal of doubling today’s average fuel economy to 55 miles per gallon in 2025. The tough leader – known for her cleanup of the famously smoggy Los Angeles skies a generation ago – wants to push automakers to sell nothing but electrics on California’s highways. “If we’re going to get our transportation system off petroleum,” she commented in a recent interview, “we’ve got to get people used to a zero-emissions world, not just a little-bit-better version of the world they have now.”
Analysts and industry experts say, that although the 70-year old is almost unknown to anyone who’s not a California resident, she’s probably the most influential automotive regu¬lator in the world. Nichols has mandated that ZEVs – battery electrics, fuel cell cars and plug-in hybrids – make up 22 percent of all California sales in 2025, but she wants to make the jump to 100 percent zero or almost zero emissions vehicles by 2030.