Statement: Governor Northam signs clean cars bill into law

Media Contacts

Virginia bill limits tailpipe pollution and expands electric vehicle market

Environment Virginia

Richmond, VA — Today, Governor Ralph Northam signed HB 1965 into law, establishing an advanced clean cars program in Virginia. The law creates a low-emission vehicle (LEV) and zero-emissions vehicle (ZEV) program. The LEV rule will strengthen regulations on tailpipe emissions for newly sold vehicles in an effort to reduce air pollution. The ZEV program works to ensure more electric vehicles are manufactured and sold in Virginia. 

Virginia joins 12 other states and Washington DC who have adopted both LEV and ZEV, programs which first originated out of California. Under the Clean Air Act, California is able to set stronger emissions standards for newly sold vehicles and other states across the country are allowed to sign-on to the more stringent regulations. The law will regulate vehicles for model year 2025 or later.   

Elly Boehmer, state director of Environment Virginia issued the following statement: 

“Governor Northam signing the Advanced Clean Cars Program into law is a huge climate achievement. Last year, Virginia became the seventh state to commit to 100 percent clean energy with the passage of the Virginia Clean Economy Act. Governor Northam is now doubling down on this achievement. It’s a vote that solidifies Virginia’s role as a climate leader both in the South and beyond. Virginia is now just the fifth state in the nation to establish Low Emission Vehicle and Zero Emission Vehicle mandates as well as codifying a commitment to 100 percent clean energy. That’s leadership.

“We thank Gov. Northam for signing this vital piece of legislation into law. We look forward to continuing to work with the administration to further the electrification and decarbonization of transportation in the commonwealth.”