Sustainably Workgroup Chairperson and Arizona Legislative District 18 Representative Mitzi Epstein and the other group members are not looking to reinvent the wheel with regards to programs to reduce air pollution.
They want to take clean air programs that have been introduced with success in other cities and through various businesses and build on them through legislation and increased community partnerships.
Writing in her monthly newsletter that, “As Chair of the Sustainability Workgroup in the legislature, I am committed to collaborative, cost-effective solutions that are based on science,” Representative Epstein is promoting an Electric Vehicle for Fleets clean air legislation for municipalities designed to:
- “Cities or Counties could apply for reimbursement from the state to cover the difference in cost between an EV and a fossil-fuel vehicle. “
- “The reimbursement will be roughly = Cost of EV – Cost of a fossil-fuel car – savings from lower fuel costs.”
- “Measure and report on cost savings. EVs are expected to have lower costs to repair, maintain, and fuel them, than fossil fuel cars. Cities and counties will measure and report those costs so we have actual data, not just projections from manufacturers.”
- “It will be a pilot program limited to one million dollars in total, with limits to the amount each city or county may receive so that more places can participate.”
The benefits, according to Epstein would be:
- “Less pollution in the air we breathe.”
- “By encouraging more cities to use EVs, we will get much better data about best practices, actual pollution reductions, and maintenance costs.”
- “If the results are effective, the program can be expanded.”
Epstein relayed further that:
“The vehicles that may be purchased by this program might be cars or they might be larger, such as garbage trucks. For example, earlier this summer, Seattle, Washington purchased an electric garbage truck that will be far quieter and cost less to maintain than the usual truck, in addition to the improvement in emissions.”
There are many worthy plans on both the left and the right to combat climate change. “I have been reaching out to the sustainability directors in private businesses and in cities to learn about the programs they are doing, to hear how they measure their results, and to discuss how we might expand the programs that work.”
The electric car fleet legislation and other common-sense strategies like protecting wildlife from litter like balloons advocated by Representative Epstein and her Sustainability Workgroup represent some solid first steps that lay the foundation, if successful, to build on these anti-pollution measures and enact more far-reaching clean air and water local and state legislation in the future.
For more information on the Sustainability Workgroup, or to make suggestions to them, please contact Representative Mitzi Epstein at 602-926-4870 or Representative Kirsten Engel at 602-926-5178
Featured Image from Smart Cities World.