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Letter: California emission standards are wrong for Minnesota

Gov. Tim Walz recently tweeted that he still intends to fast track California Emission Standards for Minnesota.

That is just wrong in so many ways. The California Air Resources Board (CARB) would make all the rules.

Whatever rules they come up with will apply to Minnesota. They won’t care what effect it has on us, this is about them. We just have to comply with what they decide.

I don’t like that idea at all, and here is why. California has 24 million vehicles, Minnesota has 4 million. California has 148 Federal Designated Air Pollution Areas, Minnesota has zero! Maybe part of that is because we use ethanol and that has helped improve air quality. It also helps the farm economy.

Oh, by the way, CARB hates ethanol! Hmmm, how are we gonna deal with that? We have lots of money invested in an ethanol industry that is suffering significantly because of the low oil prices. In California, 55 percent of vehicle sales are trucks vs. Minnesota 82 percent. Do you suppose that is because it SNOWS here? California has 18 days below freezing. Minnesota has 153. Part of the Governor’s logic in this is that people don’t have an opportunity to buy electric cars. There aren’t enough sitting on the dealer lots.

Any time I have talked to a sales person about a vehicle, about the third line they spew out is, “If you don’t see something you like, we can get it.” We don’t need to force the dealers to carry cars people don’t readily want to buy. If they did, the dealers would have them now. And cars are just the beginning. CARB also regulates boats, ATVs, lawn mowers, wood fireplaces and even BBQ grills. If anyone wants to live under California law, there is nothing stopping you from moving.

I prefer to work with Minnesotans to decide what we want our state to look like in the future. We all want clean air. We have it, they don’t. Let’s keep the choices our own.

Marlin Fay

Grand Meadow, MN