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Aggregating Energy Since 2006

Alternative Fuel Vehicles

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Saint Paul Capitol

The Duluth News Tribune reports on efforts by some to establish a state tax credit for alternative fueled vehicles. It references H.F. 1002.

Although we clearly need policies that make alternative fuel vehicles cheaper and more accessible to consumers, I do not think this will be an effective means to that end. We should know by now that people who buy dual-fuel vehicles will not necessarily use the E85 unless that is effectively cheaper than the alternative.

The larger problem with this legislation is that dual-fuel vehicles are not necessarily more efficient than those powered only by petroleum. Is society better served by consumers purchasing a 30 mile-per-gallon (mpg) vehicle because it can run on batteries or E85 when 40+ mpg vehicles are available that run on gasoline.

Any bill like developing tax credits should have a cutoff so that cars that achieve 40mpg or less are not eligible and SUVs/light trucks that achieve less than 30mpg are not eligible. We should not be giving tax credits to people who buy a 19mpg truck instead of 15mpg truck.