California has a right that no other state has, and that is to set its own vehicle emissions standards, provided they're more stringent than the standards adopted by the Environmental Protection Agency.
A handful of states have decided to join California in adopting its emissions standards and clean car rules for themselves. According to a report published Friday by the Star Tribune, Minnesota may be the next to come on board.
I say "may" because while a Minnesota administrative law judge said that the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency could enact these rules without requiring them to go through the state legislature, there are likely to be plenty of lawmakers and lobbyists who will fight the decision. These include Republican state Sen. Bill Ingebrigtsen, who has threatened to shut down the state's environmental agencies by refusing to pass a budget for them if the agency moves forward.
Currently, the list of states that have already adopted California's emissions laws comprises Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington. Oh, and the District of Columbia (even though it's not a state).
Minnesota would be the first midwestern state to join that cohort if the judge's ruling stands.
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