Days of internal combustion engine numbered
The days of the internal combustion engine are numbered. General Motors announced that it would phase out petroleum-powered cars and trucks, selling only zero-emission vehicles by 2035.
“As we advance our vision for a zero-emissions, all-electric future, we will prioritize climate actions that are inclusive for our current and future workforce, as well as the communities in which we live and work.”
General Motors, Our Plan to Protect the Environment | General Motors (gm.com)
The announcement to adopt only zero-emission technology by 2035 is likely to put pressure on automakers around the world to make similar commitments. With big businesses making big commitments for zero-emission vehicles by 2035, this dovetails with a governmental push for more aggressive policies to fight climate change and reduce future threats and risks affecting us all.
Big business must innovate and change
Leaders could point to G.M.’s decision as evidence that big businesses must decide it’s time to transition away from fossil fuels that have powered the global economy for more than a century.
General Motors 2022 Sustainability Report highlights its leadership in the clean energy revolution. This requires transforming the way auto manufacturers conduct business—from the materials they source to the way they manufacture their products. Strong leadership is key in making an equitable energy transition happen as well. Mary T. Barra, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of General Motors is leading the way:
“When GM began the journey to an electric and autonomous future, our mission was to help create a better and safer future for all, guided by our vision of zero crashes, zero emissions and zero congestion.”
Mary T. Barra, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of General Motors
GM sets goal of carbon neutrality by 2040
General Motors has set an ambitious goal of carbon neutrality by 2040. This type of commitment in the fight against climate change by eliminating tailpipe emissions from new US light-duty vehicles by 2035 is huge. In 2022, the US Energy Information Administration reported that electric vehicles and hybrids surpassed 10% of U.S. light-duty vehicle sales. As of 2016, the US (which has the second largest fleet of motor vehicles in the world) had 259.14 million motor vehicles. Of those, 246 million were light-duty vehicles so it’s a huge market with immense impact. These motor vehicles represent nearly 113 million passenger cars and 133 million light trucks which include SUVs.
An all-electric transportation future is coming
Other auto manufacturers are rolling out many EVs and are leaving internal combustion engines for innovations in battery technology. Learn more about 50 new all-electric vehicles coming soon to the marketplace – if they aren’t here already.