Jet-black automotive paintjobs could be regulated out of existence in the US if proposals under consideration by the California Air Resources Board are followed through.
Apparently the CARB is getting hot under the collar about the extra carbon being consumed by California residents turning-up the air-con to cool their sun-drenched black cars. The Board has already set new rules in place that will force manufacturers to increase the solar reflectiveness of future paint coatings, as well as improve the thermal efficiency of automotive glazing. It believes more stringent rules in this area could save nearly a million tons of CO2 per year by 2020.
However, according to Autoblog in the US, paint companies are struggling to make a decent black finish that meets the forthcoming requirements for 20% solar reflectivity by 2016 – the best attempts so far being a sort of sludgy brown.
Autoblog has noted the possibility that this story is an elaborate – if early - April Fool, but CARB has produced a 36-page treatise on the subject. As we know, where California leads in the field of ‘cleaning-up’ the automotive sector, others tend to follow. Interested parties can read all about the CARB ‘cool cars’ program here.