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The first politician with a TerraPass?

It’s perhaps telling that TerraPass counts among its customers students, university presidents, CEOs, venture capitalists, hybrid drivers, SUV drivers, fantastically wealthy individuals, fantastically dedicated individuals – but not a single U.S. politician (update: at the federal level).

This may change in the fall. John Binkowski, an Independent running for Congress in Minnesota, bought his TerraPass last week, and then kindly asked if he could promote us on his web site.

We’re not offering an endorsement of John’s campaign, both because candidate endorsements aren’t really our bag and because we’re awfully far away from Minnesota. But Minnesotans from the 6th Congressional District are invited to check out John’s thoughts on energy policy.

Among his intriguing proposals: raise the gas tax and use the funds to stabilize gas prices at a higher level. The reduced volatility might make more transparent to consumers the potential monetary savings from driving smaller cars. And the greater predictability may also help automakers running on seven-year design cycles plan more effectively.

Of course the scourge of gas taxes is that they aren’t terribly progressive. We, along with John, await feedback from the voters on this one.

(As an aside, we’ll be visiting Minnesota for the first time in a few months to get better acquainted with one of the projects we fund, the Haubenschild dairy farm. Minnesota has made large investments in renewable energy, and we’re excited to get an up-close look at how it’s being spent.)

UPDATE: This is an occasion in which we’re very happy to be proven wrong. The Hon. Mike Sellers, mayor of Cobleskill, NY is the proud owner of a TerraPass. Among its many charms, Cobleskill is home to a fine state university. This post has been amended to focus specifically on politicians at the federal level. Any other politicians out there we’ve missed?

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Start small. Be conscious of the impact your actions have on the environment and figure out what you can do to lessen the blow. Calculate, conserve, and offset.

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