http://www.greencarcongress.com/2018/02/20180220-ab2061.htmlBill in California Assembly would increase weight limits for zero- and near-zero-emission vehicles to make them more competitive
California State Assemblymember Jim Frazier, D-Discovery Bay, chairman of the Assembly Transportation Committee, has introduced legislation (AB 2061) that would increase the weight limits for zero-emission and near-zero-emission vehicles so they can compete on an equal playing field with diesel- and gasoline-powered units.
The engine and propulsion systems in electric, hydrogen and natural gas powered trucks weigh more than the traditional internal combustion engine by as much as 2,000 pounds. These cleaner energy trucks currently have to reduce their carrying capacity in order to comply with state weight laws, providing a disincentive for businesses to invest in cleaner trucks, Frazier said.
To counter this, AB 2061 stipulates that:
A near-zero-emission or zero-emission vehicle may exceed axle, tandem, gross, or bridge formula weight limits by an amount, not to exceed a maximum of 2,000 pounds, that is equal to the difference between the weight of the vehicle attributable to the fueling system carried by that vehicle and the weight of a comparable diesel tank and fueling system.
Research by the California Air Resources Board finds that transportation accounts for nearly 40% of all of the state’s greenhouse gas emissions. Diesel and gasoline big rigs and other heavy-duty trucks are the most concentrated source, making up only 3% of the vehicles on the road but accounting for 23% of transportation emissions.
[list]Major transportation corridors tend to run next to lower-income and disadvantaged communities and the pollution from these trucks disproportionately impacts this segment of our population. The issue is also one of environmental justice. Our obligation to protect all Californians makes it even more imperative to speed up replacing dirty trucks with cleaner ones.
—Jim Frazier. . . .[/list]
Considering the condition of the state's roads and highways I lean against this although I sympathize with the motivation, as we just upped the state gas tax to provide funds to do long-deferred maintenance. Naturally, Tesla and other AFV truck manufacturers are in favor. I'd rather see the trucks used in roles where excess weight isn't going to be an issue, until such time as excess weight is no longer a problem for these techs. But then I'm also not in favor of SO HOV stickers, and the legislature obviously disagrees.