Connecticut Environmental Justice Advisory Council Members Urge a “YES” Vote on Clean Cars and Clean Trucks

Greater Bridgeport Transit Authority launched their first electric transit bus in Fall 2020. If finalized, the Advanced Clean Truck rule would require increasing percentages of medium and heavy-duty (MHD) zero emission vehicle (EV) sales beginning in 2027 and running through 2035. MHD zero emission vehicle targets vary by vehicle class and would reduce emissions from internal combustion engine MHD vehicles by up to 75%

Photo credit: Susan Rubinsky

Hartford, CT – A week ahead of the 2024 legislative session, members of the Connecticut Equity and Environmental Justice Advisory Council (CEEJAC) have authored a letter to members of the Connecticut General Assembly urging a “YES” on the state’s proposed Clean Cars and Clean Trucks Standards within the first 30 days of session.

CEEJAC members have united around the need to tackle transportation pollution, as it accounts for 40 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the state and is a major contributor to ground-level ozone and particulates that harm human health. Many of the members represent constituencies within Connecticut’s “asthma capitals”: Bridgeport, Hartford, and New Haven. Reduction of transportation-related emissions is critical to ensuring healthy lives for communities that have been disproportionately impacted by asthma and respiratory illnesses, which are often low-income communities and communities of color.

The full package of rules is comprised of the California Advanced Clean Cars II (ACC II), Low Emission Vehicle (LEV IV), Advanced Clean Trucks (ACT), and Heavy-Duty Omnibus regulations.

Provisions in the proposed standards include:

  1. ACC II requires vehicle manufacturers to provide an increasing percentage of new zero-emission light-duty vehicles to dealerships starting in 2026, reaching 100% by 2035, and provide incentives for manufacturers to lower the cost of electric vehicles while providing enhanced consumer protections. The Low Emission Vehicle IV (LEV IV) regulations reduce pollution from conventional vehicles during this period of transition.
  2. ACT will gradually increase the supply of zero-emission trucks and buses, while the Heavy-Duty Omnibus (HDO) standards will ensure that diesel vehicles sold during the transition period are as clean as possible.

“CEEJAC supports legislation to adopt clean cars, trucks, and buses as rapidly as possible,” said Dr. Mark Mitchell, co-chair of the Connecticut Equity and Environmental Justice Advisory Council. “This is critical to getting cleaner air, less asthma, and reduced health disparities. It is critical that we do not leave environmental justice communities behind again.”

Alex Rodriguez, environmental justice specialist at Save the Sound and Air and Transportation Subcommittee chair of the Connecticut Equity and Environmental Justice Advisory Council, said, “Tailpipe pollution from cars and trucks is poisoning the air we breathe. Our air quality crisis is a very real problem that is harming the health of Connecticut’s communities—particularly low-income neighborhoods and communities of color—across the state. We need the General Assembly to vote to adopt the ACC II and ACT standards within the first 30 days of session so that our state may pave way for a clean transportation future that supports us all.”

The letter has been signed by Dr. Mark Mitchell, Alex Rodriguez, Sharon Lewis, Maisa Tisdale, Adrienne Farrar Houël, Rev. Dr. Albert Bailey Jr., and Xóchitl García.

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About the Connecticut Equity and Environmental Justice Advisory Council

The Connecticut Equity and Environmental Justice Advisory Council comprises environmental advocates, health experts, business leaders, faith leaders, and representatives of municipal and state agencies. Formed in 2022, CEEJAC is tasked with advising the Commissioner of the Department of Energy and Environmental Protection on lived experiences pertaining to current and historic environmental injustices, while promoting solutions to address these issues. See all Council members at https://portal.ct.gov/DEEP/Environmental-Justice/CEEJAC-Members.


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