Big Win for Climate, Clean Air, & Colorado’s Economy: AQCC Adopts Low Emission Vehicle Standards

After a months-long process, Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission on Friday adopted the so-called “Low Emission Vehicle standards.” The move protects Coloradans from the federal government’s planned rollback of fuel economy standards for passenger vehicles, ensuring that vehicle fuel efficiency continues to improve. Colorado joins thirteen other states and the District of Columbia in taking this step. More than fifteen elected and appointed officials representing CC4CA member jurisdictions weighed in during the process to ensure that the Air Quality Control Commission clearly understands what this means for local communities around the state.

CC4CA representatives testifying at the AQCC hearing last week before the commission’s final vote on the proposed standards.

Eagle County Commissioner (and incoming CC4CA President) Jill Ryan in the Denver Business Journal [paywall]:

“Local communities around Colorado are already impacted by climate change. Shorter and warmer winters are eroding our economy,” added Eagle County Commissioner Jill Ryan. “Protecting our current fuel economy standards means we cut carbon pollution and save Colorado families real dollars.”

Colorado’s towns, cities, and counties are on the front lines of the climate change crisis, contending with increasingly dangerous and destructive forest fires, escalating health impacts tied to extreme temperatures and smoke-filled air, growing demands on taxpayer dollars to repair and replace damaged infrastructure, more extreme drought, and winter recreation economies across the state facing long-term declines because of warmer winters with less snow.

The Air Quality Control Commission will now turn its attention to the “Zero Emission Vehicle standards.” If adopted next year, they will increase the availability and range of models of electric vehicles here in Colorado, making it easier for those who want electric vehicles to find one that suits their needs.