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Minnesota court upholds “clean car rule” despite dealer opposition

On Monday, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled to uphold the state’s “clean car rule”, an effort to decrease vehicle emissions and improve air quality in the state, the Associated Press reported. The court’s decision is considered a significant victory for environmental activists, who have been pushing for the plan’s adoption for years.

The plan, proposed in 2019, requires all new vehicles purchased in the state to meet specific emissions standards meant to reduce the number of air pollutants released by cars, such as carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides. The plan also requires that all vehicles in the state be fitted with advanced emission-control technologies.

In addition to mitigating climate change risks, the plan is expected to have positive health benefits for Minnesota residents, as fewer pollutants will be present in the air.

The “clean car rule” is still facing opposition from certain auto manufacturers claiming that the plan’s strict regulations will make it difficult for them to produce cars and could lead to higher consumer costs.

Auto dealers have also retaliated, claiming that consumers don’t want electric and low-emission vehicles. The dealers originally tried to have the rules blocked in federal court without success. The MPCA then heard their challenge in June of last year.

The Minnesota Auto Dealers Association claimed in that lawsuit that by adopting the California-created standards, the MPCA unjustly exceeded its regulatory power and improperly transferred that authority to another state.

However, the court’s decision stands, and the “clean car rule” will be implemented in Minnesota.

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