Here's How Minnesota Plans to Spend Its Volkswagen Settlement Money

Going green is the main focus for Minnesota in the wake of the Volkswagen emissions scandal.

This past October, German automaker Volkswagen made a legal settlement with the U.S. government in the wake of its emissions scandal.

VW, which caused an uproar in multiple consumer circles by essentially lying about the amount of nitrogen oxide its cars emitted, was slapped with a $15 billion fine to make up for its egregious acts. One of the states in the union getting a share of that cash is Minnesota, and the state already has plans on what to do with some of its Volkswagen settlement money.

Going Green with Green

Minnesota will spend $11.75 million of its Volkswagen settlement money on going green on the road by investing in cleaner trucks, buses and electric charging stations if the proposal is accepted by the public trustee. Those behind the proposal expect the result to be a reduction of about 1,000 tons of nitrogen oxides, up to 55 tons of fine particles, and up to 34,000 ton of greenhouse gases.

The agreement settled between Volkswagen and the United States government features a goal to reduce air pollution in diesel vehicles. This will be attempted by replacing older diesel vehicles or equipment with new ones that produce less pollution as well as have the ability to use any type of fuel and electricity to run.

By the Numbers

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency put together 13 separate public meetings last year to produce solutions on how to use the Volkswagen settlement money. The draft for the plan calls for spending:

  • $4.1 million for 137 cleaner-fuel heavy-duty trucks and transit buses.
  • $2.35 million for 182 cleaner-fuel school buses.
  • $1.76 million for 13 cleaner-fuel locomotives, ferries, tugs, forklifts, port cargo handling equipment and oceangoing vessels.
  • $1.76 million for 26 electric heavy duty vehicles such as buses and trucks.
  • $1.76 million for 63 electric vehicle-charging stations.

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