GM plans to be carbon neutral by 2040, aspires to end tailpipe emissions by 2035

WASHINGTON, Jan 28 (Reuters) - General Motors Co said Thursday it plans to be carbon neutral by 2040 and aspires to end sales of light-duty vehicles with tailpipe emissions by 2035.

The announcement by the largest U.S. automaker comes just over a week since President Joe Biden took office, who has pledged to tackle greenhouse gas emissions and dramatically boost the sales of electric vehicles.

GM Chief Executive Mary Barra said the automaker had worked with the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) to “develop a shared vision of an all-electric future and an aspiration to eliminate tailpipe emissions from new light-duty vehicles by 2035.”

In September, California Governor Gavin Newsom said the state plans to ban the sale of new gasoline-powered passenger cars and trucks starting in 2035 and several states have indicated they plan to follow suit.

“We’re taking actions so that we can eliminate tailpipe emissions by 2035,” said Dane Parker, GM’s chief sustainability officer, in a briefing with reporters. “Setting a goal for us 15 years from now is absolutely reachable.”

Environmental Defense Fund President Fred Krupp said in a statement “with this extraordinary step forward, GM is making it crystal clear that taking action to eliminate pollution from all new light-duty vehicles by 2035 is an essential element of any automaker’s business plan.”

More than half of GM’s capital spending and product development team will be devoted to electric and electric-autonomous vehicle programs, GM said.

Biden on Monday vowed to replace the U.S. government’s fleet of roughly 650,000 vehicles with electric models as the new administration shifts its focus toward clean-energy. - (Reporting by David Shepardson Editing by Chizu Nomiyama)