According to the California Environmental Protection Agency's Air Resources Board, hybrid vehicles with the yellow Clean Air Vehicle stickers will no longer have access to High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) or carpool lanes with only one occupant.
The EPA decided to allow only white Clean Air Vehicle sticker carrying vehicles in HOV lanes with a single occupant after the popularity of hybrid vehicles has become too much for HOV lanes to handle.
California law allows single-occupant use of HOV lanes by qualifying clean alternative fuel vehicles. Use of these lanes with only one occupant requires a Clean Air Vehicle Sticker issued by the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
There are two types of stickers; White Clean Air Vehicle Stickers are available to an unlimited number of qualifying Federal Inherently Low Emission Vehicles (ILEVs). Cars that meet these requirements are typically certified pure zero emission vehicles (100% battery electric and hydrogen fuel cell) and compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles. Assembly Bill 1500 extended the expiration of white stickers to January 1, 2015.
Yellow Clean Air Vehicle Stickers were limited to the first 85,000 applicants of qualifying hybrids. This limit has been reached and there will be no more yellow stickers issued. Yellow stickers issued to date are set to expire on December 31, 2010, however, pending legislation (SB 535) may extend the use of existing yellow stickers until July 1, 2011.
Any new applications for yellow Clean Air Vehicle stickers will be rejected.
For additional information contact the ARB Helpline at (800) 242-4450. To search all local, State and Federal vehicle incentives, visit the incentives search on www.DriveClean.ca.gov.