Newsom's most ambitious new actions are in the transportation sector, in which he hopes to accelerate a transition to electric cars. Transportation makes up California's biggest chunk of greenhouse gas emissions, roughly 40%, and contributes significantly to the state's air pollution problems.
The governor also sees an economic opportunity in electrifying transportation. In fact, California is "banking on" attracting technology innovation to help it reach its stronger climate goals, said Dallas Burtraw, a senior fellow at Resources for the Future.
It wouldn't be the first time. California, with the strongest air pollution policies in the country, has often "jumped out of the airplane and tried to design the parachute on the way down," Burtraw said. In other words, the state has sometimes set a marker to cut emissions without first identifying all the details or technologies that will get it there. The state hopes the innovators will flock to it.