100% Zero: Solutions to Achieve Universal Zero-Emission Vehicle Adoption


September 2018

Some countries and states, including California, are contemplating or making plans for phase-outs or bans on the sale of new internal combustion engine passenger vehicles by a date certain. Such a phase-out would be critical to achieving long-term climate goals and improving public health.

In California, the state will eventually need full consumer adoption of zero-emission vehicles in order to achieve legislated long-term climate goals. To that end, Governor Brown set a goal of reaching five million zero emission vehicles (ZEVs) on California’s roadways by 2030, including 250,000 public chargers by 2025, and as of mid-2018, Californians were driving over 400,000 electric vehicles.

100% Zero identifies key challenges and solutions to achieving a scenario in which 100 percent of new vehicle sales are zero-emission, based on a convening of expert stakeholders. Top barriers include:

  • Weak business model for automakers and dealers to produce and sell ZEV models that are competitive on price, range, and performance
  • Lack of public charging infrastructure to meet current and projected demand
  • Lack of public awareness of ZEVs to inform purchasing decisions
  • Insufficient, ineffective and uncertain public incentives

To overcome these challenges, policy makers should consider:

  • A state charging infrastructure funding package to deploy the needed infrastructure through 2025, with required grid upgrades and workforce training
  • New electricity rates, such as reformed demand charges, for site hosts to minimize fuel and operations costs, particularly for high-speed chargers
  • Improved and expanded long-term federal and state incentives for ZEV purchases and infrastructure, with a guaranteed phase-down over time

These and other solutions are discussed in more detail in the report.

Download the Report:

100% Zero (September 2018)

For More Information:

Contact Ethan Elkind, Director of the Climate Program, Center for Law, Energy & the Environment at UC Berkeley Law or Ted Lamm, Research Fellow in the Climate Program