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October 14, 2023
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GOP states raise fees on electric cars as gas tax revenue falls

At least eight states, all but one controlled by Republicans, now require drivers of electric vehicles to pay a hefty annual registration fee of $200 or more. GOP lawmakers say it’s an effort to make up for lost gas tax revenue. EV advocates say it’s an effort to block sales of the environmentally friendly vehicles.

The new fees come as thousands more electric cars take to the roads, thanks in part to incentives backed by President Biden and Democratic lawmakers. But some Republicans say that movement has had unintended consequences — including a decline in gas tax revenue, which they have aimed to reverse with EV fees and taxes that are sometimes double the amount paid by owners of gas-powered cars.

September 14, 2023

Knuth discusses priorities as Ogden mayoral campaign enters next phase

With the primary hurdle cleared, Taylor Knuth is looking to spread the message of what his potential administration’s priorities would be.

On Wednesday, Knuth — surrounded by dozens of supporters — held a press conference on the front steps of the Ogden Municipal Building to announce his policy priorities if elected in November. Knuth is facing current council member Ben Nadolski in the election to become mayor of Ogden.

September 12, 2023

Utah settles with U.S. Magnesium over years of environmental violations

A company branded by environmental groups as a major Utah polluter has settled eight years worth of violations and lawsuits with the state of Utah.

U.S. Magnesium agreed to a $430,900 settlement with the Utah Department of Environmental Quality for dozens of violations stretching back to 2015, including five pollution violations where the company was accused of exceeding emissions limits. The settlement, approved Tuesday by the Utah Air Quality Board, came over the objections of two members who felt the amount agreed upon was too light.

September 12, 2023

Guest opinion: CREP gives Ogden a real choice vs. energy monopoly

The Community Renewable Energy Program (CREP) is the most impactful step Utah communities can take to reduce our carbon emissions and positively impact our climate and air quality.

Signed into law in 2019, CREP is the pathway for Ogden, and other communities, to work with Rocky Mountain Power to achieve net-100% renewable energy.

July 5, 2023
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O₂ Utah: Improving Air Quality to Improve Quality of Life

O₂ Utah, a local environmental nonprofit working to better the air quality of Utah, collaborated with Senator Kirk Cullimore and Representative Andrew Stoddard to pass and sign House Bill 220 on March 14 to reduce the unfettered dumping of toxic halogens into our airshed. O₂’s mission is to use elections and policy to their advantage, garnering support from elected officials to make environmental changes to the law and standard practice. “I thought we needed an organization that followed a three-step plan,” says David Garbett, the director and founder of O₂ Utah. “Step one, getting involved in elections; two, building relationships with policymakers; and three, giving them policy.”

March 4, 2023
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Utah lawmakers agree to create halogen emissions 'reduction plan' for Wasatch Front

Utah lawmakers on Friday finalized a bill that calls for a state study of halogen emission sources along the Wasatch Front, while also coming up with a plan to reduce those emissions in the coming years.

It's the first major legislation tied to a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration report published in January that found that a magnesium plant in Tooele County was producing halogen emissions, especially bromine, that boosted pollution levels by as much as 25% in the region.

February 28, 2023

Study of bromine’s relationship to Utah’s bad air clears Senate committee

A bill addressing Utah’s infamous pollution-filled inversions cleared another hurdle toward becoming law after passing unanimously out of a Senate committee on Tuesday.

Democratic Rep. Andrew Stoddard’s “Emissions Reduction Amendments” bill gained more support after Republican Sen. Kirk Cullimore, R-Sandy, signed on as a co-sponsor. The bill would conduct an in-depth study of bromine emissions in the Salt Lake Valley.

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