In California, green car buyers have an advantage over the others: they can travel in the carpool (HOV) lane, by law, in a green car that has only one occupant. That law was about to expire on Jan. 1, 2015, but it seems that it’s going to be extended 10 more years.
This is just like one of those perks parents give to their kids if they do their homework correctly or if they get an A. California Assemblyman Bob Blumenfield proposed a new bill called AB 266 that would extend these rights (represented by a white, green or yellow sticker) throughout the entire life of the car (which I think it’s right).
Many people, not long ago, used to buy Priuses just for having access to the HOV lane, and these cars cost about $1,500 more if they had the yellow sticker.
Full-electric vehicles like the Tesla Model S, Nissan Leaf, those powered by CNG (clean natural gas) or low-volume cars, along with hybrids will receive a white, respectively a green sticker.
There’s a catch, though: green stickers are limited to 40,000 and so far 31,000 white and green have been issued, according to Blumenfeld’s office, quoted by Greencarreports.
This initiative is nice and I totally agree with green cars having some extra rights over gas-guzzlers. The only issue that arises is a social one: the hatred of the others towards greener drivers, leading to acts of vandalism on Priuses and other expensive electric toys (you probably heard about such cases).