The California Air Resources Board once again reports that the state is nearly out of Green Clean Air Vehicle decals that allow plug-in hybrids with a single passenger to drive in high-occupancy vehicle lanes. As of November 17, 2015, the Department of Motor Vehicles had issued 80,876 of the stickers out of a limit of 85,000.
The 4,124 decals that remain will probably only last several more weeks unless the state passes a law to increase the total once again. According to a tally by Hybrid Cars, the DMV issued about 2,500 stickers a month between early June and November.
The state legislature originally limited the green decal program to 40,000 vehicles, and drivers slowly embraced the offer at first. However, the popularity eventually boomed, and lawmakers had to increase the total three times. Under the current law, the stickers expire on January 1, 2019.
The state might not be ready to dump the program yet. CARB wants nearly every new vehicle in California to have zero emissions by 2030, and a recent study shows that access to the stickers boosts green car sales, according to Hybrid Cars. California also already offers tax incentives for some buyers as a further enticement towards cleaner models.
In addition to the green decals for PHEVs, the state has the White Clean Air Vehicle stickers for models that are fully electric, hydrogen fueled, or use compressed natural gas. These also currently expire on January 1, 2019. There is no limit to the number of white stickers CARB plans on handing out.