Clean fuel standards bill heads to Senate floor

A bill that aims to lower the carbon intensity standards of transportation fuels will head to the Senate floor after passing the Senate Finance Committee on a 6-4 vote. Bill sponsor Rep. Kristina Ortez, D-Taos, said one in seven New Mexicans has a respiratory illness and HB 41 will help those people by reducing air […]

Clean fuel standards bill heads to Senate floor

A bill that aims to lower the carbon intensity standards of transportation fuels will head to the Senate floor after passing the Senate Finance Committee on a 6-4 vote.

Bill sponsor Rep. Kristina Ortez, D-Taos, said one in seven New Mexicans has a respiratory illness and HB 41 will help those people by reducing air pollution.

She pointed to a report from the American Lung Association that shows Las Cruces and Albuquerque have some of the worst air in the country.

She said there are a range of cleaner fuels that will benefit from the legislation. While it includes electric vehicles, Ortez stressed that it is not an electric vehicle bill.

HB 41 would create a carbon credit market where companies that produce high carbon intensity fuels can buy credits.

The bill now heads to the Senate floor.

While some advocacy groups such as NM Native Vote and League of Women Voters expressed support for the legislation, others have concerns.

Krystal Curley, the executive director of Indigenous Lifeways, was among the advocates opposed to the bill. She described it as a false solution to climate change.

“Climate change requires a holistic approach that addresses all sectors contributing to greenhouse gas emissions,” she said. “By concentrating solely on transportation fuels, the bill fails to address the broader, systematic issues driving climate change.”

Furthermore, she criticized the carbon credit market and described it as “prioritizing economic interests over environmental outcomes.”

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