In 2008, people in Minnesota saved 39 million gallons of gasoline by riding transit in record numbers – the amount consumed by about 67,000 cars in Minnesota. Transportation is responsible for more than two-thirds of our dependence on oil, and about one-third of our carbon dioxide pollution. Standing with other transit advocates in front of the Light Rail station at City Hall in downtown Minneapolis on Wednesday, Environment Minnesota outlined the findings in their new report “Getting On Track: Record Transit Ridership Increases Energy Independence.”
America is the largest consumer of energy in the world.The majority of this energy is derived from dirty, polluting sources such as coal, oil, natural gas and nuclear power. Our consumption of these fuels exacerbates global warming, keeps us dependent upon oil and other fossil fuels, and undermines our economy.
Air pollution from cars and light-duty trucks in Minnesota harms public health, contributing to cancer, asthma and respiratory disease. Moreover, pollution from cars and light-duty trucks contributes to global warming, which threatens much of what makes Minnesota special, from the Boundary Waters wilderness to our vast forests to the health of our 10,000 lakes.
The Minnesota Clean Car Act (H.R. 690 and S.F. 674), a bill that would direct Minnesota to adopt a stricter set of tailpipe emission standards for air toxics and greenhouse gases from cars, light-duty trucks and SUVs in Minnesota, was introduced to the 2009 Legislature on February 12, 2009 by Representative Melissa Hortman of Brooklyn Park and Senator John Marty of Roseville.
Environment Minnesota Research and Policy Center is part of The Public Interest Network, which operates and supports organizations committed to a shared vision of a better world and a strategic approach to social change.