Does Delaware Have a ZEV Mandate?

Direct answer: Yes, Delaware does have a ZEV (Zero-Emission Vehicle) mandate.

If your interest lies in understanding the green transportation policies of Delaware, you’ve landed on the right article.

This post will provide an insight into Delaware’s ambition to combat climate change with its progressive ZEV mandate, thus addressing your curiosity or concern about the state’s eco-friendly vehicle requirements.

As someone who has researched this topic extensively, I can assure you this read will expand your knowledge about Delaware’s ZEV laws, their timeline and long-term implications.

Specifically crafted for those interested in green car regulations and state laws on electric vehicles in Delaware, this post promises a comprehensive take on the subject.

Delaware State map cutout with Delaware flag superimposed

Key Takeaways

1Delaware has a ZEV (Zero-Emission Vehicle) mandate that requires a certain percentage of vehicles sold in the state to be zero-emission. The mandate is set to take effect starting from 2026 with the 2027 model year.
2From 2027, about 43% of new small and medium-sized vehicles delivered to dealerships in Delaware will have to be zero-emission. This percentage will increase annually until it reaches 100% by 2035.
3All new passenger cars, trucks and SUVs sold in Delaware will have to be zero-emission vehicles by the year 2035. This initiative is part of the state government’s effort to reduce carbon pollution and meet its climate goals.

Understanding Delaware’s ZEV Mandate

Delaware’s Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) mandate is an important legal decree that has significant implications for the state’s transportation sector.

The mandate is part of a wider effort to reduce carbon emissions and meet Delaware’s climate goals. This represents a significant shift in the state laws on electric vehicles, as it requires a certain percentage of all new vehicles sold in the state to be zero-emission vehicles.

The policy, which is set to go into effect from 2026, will initially require 43% of all new small and medium-sized vehicles delivered for sale in Delaware to be zero-emission.

This comprehensive ZEV mandate forms part of Delaware’s broader environmental strategy and commitment to combat climate change.

As per the ZEV standards in Delaware, this percentage will increase annually until reaching 100% by 2035. This essentially means that all new passenger cars, trucks, and SUVs sold within the state must be zero-emission vehicles from that year onward.

This shift towards green transportation policies aligns with global efforts aimed at reducing carbon footprints.

The implementation of these regulations signals a clear commitment by Delaware authorities to promote sustainable practices within the automotive industry.

Their aim is not only to reduce carbon emissions but also encourage innovation within the industry so as to develop more environment-friendly technologies.

This forward-thinking approach positions Delaware at the forefront of sustainable transport policy nationally.

Timeline and Vehicle Eligibility Under the ZEV Mandate

The timeline for implementing these stringent ZEV regulations, begins with their enforcement starting in model year 2027.

This means that starting from this year, dealerships across Delaware will need to ensure compliance with these rules by ensuring that at least 43% of their small and medium-sized vehicle deliveries are zero-emission models.

To gain more insight about Zero Emission Vehicles you can visit my post: “Zero Emission Vehicles: Everything You Need To Know“.

Gradually, this proportion will continue increasing each year until it reaches complete coverage by 2035. This plan outlines a clear roadmap towards achieving full adoption of zero-emissions transport systems statewide.

The eligibility criteria for this mandate include all new passenger cars, light-duty trucks, and SUVs regardless of size or type. Importantly, these requirements stand irrespective of whether they are powered by electricity or fuel cell technology.

These progressive measures reflect an underlying commitment towards achieving cleaner air quality levels while simultaneously contributing significantly toward global climate change mitigation efforts.

The focus on incremental progress rather than immediate radical change allows both consumers and manufacturers time to adjust accordingly without causing undue disruption.

A comparison can be drawn with similar initiatives like California’s Zero Emission Vehicle mandate.

The Long-Term Implications Of Delaware’s Green Transportation Policies

The long-term implications of such progressive policies cannot be overstated – particularly when viewed against broader environmental considerations

In addition to making significant strides toward meeting its own climate goals, the implementation also places pressure on other states nationwide – encouraging them too adopt similar stances.

By requiring every new vehicle sold after 2035 under its jurisdiction to produce zero emissions, not only does it force manufacturers selling cars within its borders comply but also serves as an example for other states who may seek similar green legislation.

Furthermore, it sends out a clear message regarding societal expectations concerning responsible consumption habits as well as sustainability-focused manufacturing processes.

Positioning at the leading edge of technological innovation is of utmost importance. Such policies inevitably spur technological advancements, which help to drive down costs associated with producing electrically powered automobiles.

As a result, these vehicles become more accessible to the public at large.


Delaware’s ZEV mandate sets a clear timeline for transitioning to a zero-emission vehicle fleet. By gradually increasing the percentage of zero-emission vehicles required each year, the state aims to significantly reduce carbon pollution and align with its climate goals by 2035.

Jonathan Rice

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