NEW YORK -- Gov. Kathy Hochul says New York State is aiming for zero emission vehicles by the year 2035.
She directed the state Department of Environmental Conservation to require all new passenger cars, pickup trucks and SUVs sold in New York state be zero-emission by 2035 on Thursday.
That means all new vehicles purchased in New York will need to be zero-emission models beginning in 2035. To reach that target, 35% will need to be zero-emission by 2026 and 68% by 2030.
All new school buses purchased will have to be zero-emission by 2027, with the entire fleet meeting these standards by 2035.
New York is the second state to mandate zero-emissions vehicles by the year 2035. But the state had to wait for California.
California finally voted last month to ban the sale of gas-powered cars beginning in 2035.
Any state-led move to enforce stricter emissions rules must occur first in California, per federal regulations that date back to the 1970 Clean Air Act.
"That's all right, once they made that decision, we are able to step up immediately and say now there's nothing holding us back," Hochul said. "We had to wait for California to take a step because there's some federal requirements that California had to go first. That's the only time we're letting them go first."
Hochul also announced the state is adding $10 million to its Drive Clean rebate program to help New Yorkers buy electric vehicles.
The rebate comes to about $2,000 per vehicle. More than 70,000 rebates have already been issued.
The governor also announced the installation of more fast chargers for electric vehicles.
"Think about how simple this is, simply pull into a gas station or what used to be a gas station, or a convenience store, while you're in there for 20 minutes with a fast charging station, your vehicle can be charged," Hochul said.
So far there are 100 of those fast chargers installed across the state with more to come.
"New York is a national climate leader and an economic powerhouse, and we're using our strength to help spur innovation and implementation of zero-emission vehicles on a grand scale," she said. "With sustained state and federal investments, our actions are incentivizing New Yorkers, local governments, and businesses to make the transition to electric vehicles. We're driving New York's transition to clean transportation forward, and today's announcement will benefit our climate and the health of our communities for generations to come."