Fourteen States Join California in a Commitment to Phasing Out Diesel Trucks


The California Air Resource Board (“CARB”) recently adopted a new rule requiring truck manufacturers to transition from diesel to electric zero-emission trucks starting in 2024. The ultimate objective of CARB’s Advanced Clear Trucks (“ACT”) regulation is to eliminate all diesel trucks by 2045 (this blog’s more detailed discussion of the ACT regulation can be found here). On July 14, fourteen states, through a signed memorandum of understanding, joined California in its goal of phasing out all diesel trucks sales by 2050.[1]

The signed memorandum of understanding outlines the following objectives and action items:

  • The signatories will work to achieve the 2050 zero-emission objective through the previously established Zero-Emission Task Force, established in 2013 by California, Connecticut, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, and Vermont;
  • The Zero-Emission Task Force will develop “a multi-state action plan to identify barriers and propose solutions to support widespread electrification of medium- and heavy-duty vehicles” (Zero Emission Medium- and Heavy-Duty Vehicle Action Plan) within six months;
  • Each signatory is to achieve at least 30% new medium- and heavy-duty truck sales zero-emission vehicles by 2030 with the goal 100% zero-emission truck sales by 2050; and
  • Signatories are to facilitate inter-agency coordination within states to achieve the zero-emission targets.

While the memorandum of understanding is not legally binding, it demonstrates renewed interest in the electrification of the motor carrier industry. The memorandum also suggests that more states could follow California’s lead by adopting regulations restricting the sale and use of diesel medium- and heavy-duty trucks. The signatories to the July 14 memorandum of understanding are California, Connecticut, Colorado, Hawaii, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington.

For more information about California’s new zero-emission regulations, the memorandum of understanding, and the steps its signatories are taking to achieve the 2050 zero-emission goal, please contact:

Gregory R. Reed       (202) 298-4767 

Paul D. Cullen, Jr.    (202) 944-8600 


[1] Multi-State Medium- and Heavy-Duty Zero Emission Vehicle Memorandum of Understanding (July 14, 2020) available at


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