Yesterday, Governor Phil Murphy announced that New Jersey will join California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont in signing the State Zero-Emission Vehicles Programs Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Through the MOU, New Jersey will work with the other states to support the deployment of zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) as part of the Multi-State ZEV Task Force.
The MOU is a direct response to the Trump Administration's decision to initiate a rulemaking process to weaken federal vehicle fuel emissions standards. Governor Murphy said “New Jersey will use every tool at our disposal to fight misguided efforts to roll back federal fuel emissions standards that save New Jersey consumers money, protect the environment, and drive innovation in the transportation sector."
The nature and extent of any changes to the Model Year 2022-2025 standards will be determined in conjunction with the National Highway Transportation and Safety Administration (NHTSA), in a rulemaking expected to occur sometime this year. In remarks made during the Administrator's announcement, National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) President and CEO Peter Welch praised EPA's decision, saying, "Dealers fully support continuous improvements in fuel economy, and we fully support fuel economy requirements that will encourage fleet turnover. But the key to the equation isn't just the highest possible standard; it's the highest standard we can achieve while keeping vehicles affordable."
In addition to joining the MOU, New Jersey is already one of the 13 states, along with the District of Columbia, that has enacted legislation to follow stronger fuel emissions standards set by the State of California.