Ohio is a unique state. Our statewide elected leadership is largely “red,” and a good deal of our local elected leadership is “blue.” We’re a “swing state” that is considered one of the most influential in Presidential elections, with both parties making countless campaign stops on our soil, it is safe to say that Ohio is pretty firmly planted in the middle of the political spectrum. Because of this, we are a state that is ripe with opportunity for bipartisan efforts on energy and environmental policy.
I only recently joined the team at Clean Fuels Ohio – beginning my role as Special Projects Manager in January. However, since then I have had the opportunity to meet and speak with countless individuals in numerous and varying roles around the State – as well as with very different political ideologies and backgrounds – and I am extremely encouraged by what I have encountered. From Mayors to State Representatives, Councilmembers to executive staff, CEOs to activists, far left to far right and right in-between – there is a genuine desire to see a positive change in the policies that impact our lives on a daily basis. Whether it is on our efforts to support changes being made to the money being disbursed by the Volkswagen Settlement Fund in Ohio, or support for the bipartisan Senate Bill 257 sponsored by Senators Michael Rulli (R) and Sean O’Brien (D), we see examples of a broad-based willingness to work together each and every day – something that seems to be more and more rare in this time of political incivility.
Clean Fuels Ohio offers a unique opportunity for many interested parties in Ohio. We are fuel neutral, we are willing to work with anyone and everyone, and we are genuinely interested in facilitating conversations with individuals and organizations of all different backgrounds and ideologies. The alternative fuel industry in Ohio doesn’t just cover environmental and energy policy – it also incorporates vast opportunities for economic development, energy security, and job growth into the solutions proposed. It is our desire to take these issues as a full-package into everything we do and, in-turn, provide policy and project solutions that everyone can support in one way or another.
If you or your organization want to work with us to help enact unified, positive change related to the adoption of inherently cleaner, alternative fuel sources around Ohio, a good place to start is by joining our Volkswagen Coalition. We’re asking the state to utilize the non-taxpayer-dollars given to Ohio for the purpose of vehicle replacement to prioritize alternative fuels projects in all 88 of our counties – and we need more of our friends and allies to sign onto our letter that details the changes being requested. A copy of this letter and the existing signatories can be provided to you by reaching out to me at Tyler@cleanfuelsohio.org. This is just one of the many opportunities we see to make a difference in our state through unified, bipartisan, future-focused efforts.