Colorado Businesses Applaud Governor’s Move to Adopt Advanced Clean Car Standards

Business leaders commend Gov. John Hickenlooper’s leadership in adopting clean car standards, emphasizing statewide economic and environmental benefits
Jun 19, 2018 3:10 PM ET
Campaign: State Policy

June 19, 2018 /3BL Media/ - Influential businesses praised Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper’s decision this week to reduce transportation emissions and adopt a program that would put more clean and efficient cars on the road.

The program, known as Advanced Clean Cars (ACC), will boost Colorado’s economy by increasing fuel cost savings, reducing health costs, and curbing greenhouse gas emissions.

“Cleaner, more efficient vehicles help companies like ours cut costs, avoid the volatility of fossil fuel prices, and achieve our climate goals,” the businesses wrote in a letter initially delivered in April to Gov. Hickenlooper. “By increasing the availability of clean vehicles in Colorado, these standards will provide Coloradans with a broad set of positive outcomes and generate significant benefits for our bottom line.”

The letter, signed by Aspen Skiing Company, Burton Snowboards, Clif Bar, New Belgium Brewing, Smartwool, Colorado Ski Country USA and other major companies, highlights the economic benefits clean car standards will bring to the state.

The letter also applauds Gov. Hickenlooper for his leadership on adopting the state’s first electric vehicle plan in January. The plan would put nearly 1 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030, saving consumers more than $500 million per year in fuel costs. This decision marks an important step forward in ensuring Colorado is able to achieve this ambitious goal while simultaneously creating significant economic opportunity for Colorado’s business community.

“Like many Colorado companies, New Belgium understands the economic and health risks of climate change. That's why we've spent 27 years working to reduce emissions across our operations with investments in on-site solar and biogas generation,” said Steve Fechheimer, CEO at New Belgium Brewing. “Despite those investments, our corporate fleet remains a contributor to carbon emissions and air pollution. Policies that support the uptake of electric vehicles present a significant opportunity for Colorado companies and the entire state, and we are proud to support Governor Hickenlooper in this important decision.”

By adopting the ACC program, Colorado will join 13 other states and the District of Columbia that have already implemented these standards and represent over a third of the U.S. market for cars and trucks. These standards will increase the number of efficient and electric passenger vehicles for sale in the state and provide an important backstop for Colorado against federal rollbacks, ensuring residents and businesses continue to benefit from vehicle fuel savings while keeping Colorado’s air clean.

“At Burton, our success as a business is directly tied to protecting Colorado’s natural resources. Adopting statewide clean car standards in Colorado will ensure cost savings for businesses, employees, and consumers,” said Donna Carpenter, CEO and co-owner, at Burton Snowboards. “The standards will also help Colorado grow its clean energy economy and compete in attracting new investments.”

“Reducing emissions in the transportation sector is critical to tackling climate change,” said Elysa Hammond, vice president, environmental stewardship, at Clif Bar. “Clif Bar is committed to reducing emissions throughout our operations and across our supply chain, and we support the efforts of Colorado’s leaders to encourage the adoption of low and zero emission vehicles.”

Greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector have surpassed those from the power sector in the U.S. cars and light-duty trucks, which would be covered by the ACC program, are responsible for about 60 percent of transportation emissions, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

“Colorado’s ski industry and outdoor recreation are driving forces of our state’s economy and key indicators of our residents’ quality of life,” said Chris Linsmayer, public affairs director, at Colorado Ski Country USA. “Ski areas across the state have made actions to mitigate climate change a priority because it is crucial to the longevity of our industry. Reducing carbon from transportation emissions is an important step, so we support Governor Hickenlooper’s action.”

“Low and zero emission vehicles will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve Colorado’s air quality — which would benefit our public health, tourism, and the outdoor recreation industry,” said Matt Hamilton, sustainability director at Aspen Skiing Company. “Curbing emissions from the transportation sector is essential to the viability of Colorado’s ski industry and the 46,000 Coloradans the industry employs.”