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The need for green transportation options like electric vehicles (EVs) is high, as pollution levels reach irreversible heights. Reducing the amount of air pollution produced by cars is an instrumental part of the fight against global warming.
California’s Bay Area has been battling its air pollution levels for decades. However, they’ve come up with some clever incentive programs to help encourage EV buying, and one of them just received enough funding to get renewed.
According to Mercury News, you can get up to $9,500 by trading in your old car for an EV or hybrid.
Bay Area pollution issues
As bad as vehicle emissions are now, pollution levels in the Bay were even higher in the late ‘40s and ‘50s. After WWII, there were more people, more cars on the road, and constant fires burning in dumps and wrecking yards, which weren’t banned until 1957.
The smog layer in the area was always around, increasing the amount of low ozone in the air. By 1946, the California Legislature authorized the creation of county air pollution control districts.
These committees, later combined into a larger group effort, worked to steadily lower the amount of air pollution present in the Bay for the last seven decades.
What is the ‘Clean Cars for All’ program?
The Bay Area initiative that’s been extended is called the "Clean Cars for All" program, which started in 2019. Its purpose is to get older vehicles with higher pollution outputs off the street by making EVs and hybrids more accessible to lower-income communities. The program has recently been granted $8.3 million in funding by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District.
One car from the 1980s or older can have the same amount of emissions as 50 new vehicles, which is why it’s imperative to start getting them off the street. Low-income communities need support to make the switch to electric. Making EVs more accessible will help streamline efforts to popularize them and decrease the number of gas cars on the road.
The program can give out grants for hybrids, battery electric vehicles, fuel cell electrics, e-bikes, car sharing, and public transportation passes when someone turns in an old gas-burning vehicle. The amount of money differs, though, and there are criteria the participants have to meet.
For fully electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles, the grants range from $5,500 to $9,500. For new or used hybrids less than eight years old, you can receive $5,000 to $7,000. However, the car must be a 2005 model or older and registered in the Bay Area for at least two years.
Those who apply need to meet some standards too. To be eligible, you must live in the Bay Area, in one of the 76 selected zip codes chosen by the Air District. Single applicants also need to make $51,520 a year or less, while family units of four must make less than $106,000 a year.
How long will the funding keep the program going for?
Though the program was recently extended, it’s unclear how much longer it will be around. If you live in the Bay Area and meet the program criteria, it’s a good idea to turn in your vehicle for a greener one whenever you can.
You’ll want to make sure your new or used EV is properly insured. If you want to save money on car insurance, the Jerry app is a good place to start. A licensed broker, Jerry does all the hard work of finding cheap quotes from the top name-brand insurance companies and buying new car insurance. Jerry will even help you cancel your old policy.
And to ensure you always have the lowest rate, Jerry will send you new quotes every time your policy comes up for renewal, so you’re always getting the coverage you want at the best price.