General Motors (GM) has announced that it plans to end production of all diesel and gasoline-powered cars, light trucks and SUVs by 2035.
The company also aims to shift its entire fleet to electric vehicles by that date, as part of a carbon-neutral plan by 2040. To achieve that goal, GM aims to use 100 percent renewable energy to power its U.S facilities by 2030 and its global areas by 2035.
“Our most significant carbon impact comes from tailpipe emissions of the vehicles that we sell – in our case, it’s 75 percent,” said GM chief executive Mary Barra. “That is why it is so important that we accelerate toward a future in which every vehicle we sell is a zero-emissions vehicle.”
The company plans to offer 30 all-electric models by the mid-2020s and says it’s investing $27 billion over the next five years on electric and autonomous vehicle development.
Under the current plan, medium- and heavy-duty vehicles would still use gas, but the company plans to look for ways to offset any emissions from those vehicles by 2040.
The task will be a gargantuan one since only about 20,000 of the 2.55 million vehicles the company sold in the U.S market last year were electric.
The move is a seismic shift by one of the world’s largest automakers that makes billions of dollars today from gas-guzzling pickup trucks and sport-utility vehicles. This announcement could put pressure on automakers around the world to make similar commitments.
It could also embolden President Biden and other elected officials to push for even more aggressive policies to fight climate change.