Did you hear the one about California fighting wildfires by banning gasoline cars?
California Gov. Gavin Newsom made headlines by signing an executive order Wednesday banning the future sale of new gasoline-powered cars and trucks. In the wake of the devastating California fires, he said more ambitious steps are needed to reduce climate change. Banning gas transport, he said in a statement, “is the most impactful step our state can take to fight climate change.” Poetically, he stressed that “our cars shouldn’t make wildfires worse.”
While the governor is correct that climate change is a real problem that we should fix smartly, most of his analysis is seriously flawed, and his solution is depressingly inefficient.