Downtown Phoenix, as viewed through smog, February 16, 2007. / Josh More / Flickr

State Representative Kirsten Engel (D-Tucson) wants Arizona to adopt California’s standards for motor vehicle emissions.

Engel is the prime sponsor of HB 2348, which requires the director of environmental quality to adopt standards for motor vehicles in line with the California Air Resources Board.

These standards would be applied to Arizona through a waiver under US Code Title 24 § 7543. The waiver allows states to adopt more stringent emission standards for new vehicles than under federal law if the standards are necessary for “compelling and extraordinary conditions” and so long as they are not “arbitrary and capricious.”

In a Facebook post, Rep. Engel was buoyed by the positive response to her bill in the Arizona legislature’s Request to Speak system.

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“So today my bill, HR 2348, to have Arizona adopt the clean car standards in effect in California and 13 other states and DC, will be heard in the House Environment Committee,” posted Engel. “Almost 50 folks have signed in thus far on the Request to Speak system for or against the bill. This snapshot of the registered lobbyists says it all – citizens’ groups are in favor of the bill because it will mean cleaner air, the auto industry is against the bill because they don’t want what they perceive to be the hassle of selling more electric cars (I’m mystified as to what the Rock Products Assn has against clean air and EVs!). But not only are EVs cleaner (chunks of AZ have really unhealthy air), they are the future of auto technology. I’ll let you know what happens today!”

The bill was Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee and the Rules Committee. The bill is scheduled for a second hearing in the Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee. No hearings are scheduled in the Rules Committee.