First US City Bans Building New Gas Pumps

The Bay Area city of Petaluma, California is the first in America to ban construction of new gas stations or adding new pumps to existing stations. The city actually had already put a two-year moratorium new pump construction back in 2019, this just makes it officially permanent.

This ban is in attempt to help the ongoing climate crisis. California plans to ban the sale of new gas-powered cars by 2035. Last September, Governor Gavin Newsom signed a ban on the sale of new ICE vehicles which means dealerships will be full of nothing but zero-emissions cars.

While the state of California has a plan to be ICE vehicle-free by 2035, Petaluma has its own plan laid out to be emissions-free quicker – by 2030. The town is on the smaller side with 15-square-miles of land and 61,000-residents.

The city council says there are already too many gas stations with 16 currently and one under construction, approved before the bill was passed. This bill also streamlined the ability to add more electric vehicle plugs around the city.

Environmental group Coalition Opposing New Gas Stations (CONGAS) is hoping that Petaluma won’t be the last city with a ban like this. For the last two years the group has been working towards a ban of gas pump construction in all of Sonoma County, so Petaluma is a good starting point.

The ban in Petaluma will go into effect immediately after a second approval by the city council.  

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