The California Air Resources Board approved a $483 million plan to fund clean car rebates, zero-emission transportation, clean trucks, and other alternative-fuel and mobility pilot projects.
The approved plan, called the Fiscal Year 2018-19 Funding Plan for Clean Transportation Incentives, is part of the state's strategy for improving air quality and reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transportation sector, the state’s largest source of air pollution and climate-changing gases, according to CARB.
Of the total, $455 million comes from cap-and-trade proceeds via California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of cap-and-trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy and improving public health and the environment — particularly in disadvantaged communities, according to CARB. The remaining $28 million is from the Air Quality Improvement Program.
The funding is aimed at aiding low-income families with being able to afford alt-fuel vehicles and engage in cleaner transportation methods, such as car sharing. This includes $200 million for the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project, which includes increased rebates for low-income consumers.
Other highlights of the plan include, $75 million for transportation equity projects, including the Enhanced Fleet Modernization Plus-Up/Clean Cars 4 All Program that offers incentives for lower-income drivers to scrap and replace older, high-polluting cars with zero- or near-zero-emission cars, financing assistance for lower-Income consumers, and clean mobility options.
The overall plan serves as the blueprint for expending funds appropriated to CARB in budget bills passed this year by the legislature and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, including the $455 million from cap-and-trade auction proceeds, according to CARB. The plan establishes priorities for the funding, describes the projects CARB intends to fund, and sets funding targets for each project.
Projects in the plan approved by CARB prioritize environmental justice by addressing specific community needs and increasing awareness of, and access to, cleaner transportation and mobility options exceeding the requirements called for under Senate Bill 350, according to CARB. The funding plan builds upon successes and lessons from previous years’ investments and furthers collaboration across related initiatives such as the AB 617 Community Air Protection Program.