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New California poll shows majority support for Governor Newsom’s transportation electrification policies

Posted by Adam Winer on Sep 8, 2021

Californians also support Congress passing an infrastructure bill to help electrify transportation and modernize California’s energy infrastructure

SACRAMENTO, September 8, 2021 – Efforts to electrify California’s transportation are welcomed by a majority of residents, according to a new statewide poll conducted by YouGov for Advanced Energy Economy Institute, a nonprofit educational affiliate of national business group Advanced Energy Economy (AEE).

51 percent of California residents say they approve of Governor Gavin Newsom’s executive order that would require all new passenger cars and trucks sold in California to be zero-emission by 2035. Only 29 percent of California residents say they disapprove of the order, and 20 percent remain unsure.

The poll finds there is also majority support for electrifying school buses in the state. 56 percent of California residents say the state should require all school buses purchased after 2035 to be electric, with 28 percent opposed to such a requirement and 16 percent unsure.

“Californians believe that electrifying our cars, trucks, and buses is the right direction for the state,” said Ryan Gallentine, policy director at AEE. “California’s leadership in the transition to zero-emission transportation means communities across the state are experiencing the benefits tied to clean transportation. This research suggests Californians will continue to support bold action and we have an opportunity to create a win-win-win for public health, the environment and local economies.”

Californians also want to see the federal government take action in support of electrifying transportation. When asked if the federal infrastructure bill, which includes money for electric vehicle charging infrastructure and electric school and transit buses, is a good use of public dollars, nearly two-thirds (65 percent) of California residents agreed, with 22 percent disagreeing, and 13 percent responding they are unsure.

About the same percentage of California residents say Congress should pass an infrastructure package that “invests dollars in strengthening local energy systems and infrastructure in rural communities and communities disproportionately impacted by pollution,” with 64 percent saying they agree (41 percent “strongly agree,” 23 percent “somewhat agree”); 10 percent say they strongly disagree and 3 percent say they somewhat disagree.

Results of the poll are available for download here

This poll was conducted by YouGov using a statewide representative sample of 1,000 California residents interviewed online between Aug 6-15, 2021. Respondents were selected from YouGov’s opt-in panel to be representative of all U.S. registered voters. The margin of error (at 95% confidence interval) is +/- 4.4 percent.


  • Our recent analysis found that electrified transportation companies employed 42,500 Californians at the end of 2020, with industry employers saying they expected job growth in the sector to rise by 5 percent in 2021. 
  • Another analysis by AEE found that 10.7 million California jobs could be created in electrified transportation with a $274 billion federal stimulus investment, which would also lead to $19 billion in savings for consumers, governments and businesses, and deliver a $1.3 trillion benefit to the national GDP.
  • AEE hosted an online panel discussion earlier this year about California’s electric vehicle supply chain and manufacturing industries, featuring David Hochschild, the Chair of the California Energy Commission, and Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia (D-Coachella).

Topics: California Engagement, Advanced Transportation, Press Releases, Electric Vehicles