Maine is, unfortunately, the tailpipe of the USA, and we are the recipients of pollution blowing in from other states. We cannot control this, but we can be aware that transportation emissions, to which we all contribute, is the major source of climate-changing pollution in Maine.

Vehicles contribute carbon emissions that feed global warming and add to poor air quality, which increases the incidence of respiratory problems and other serious illnesses. The proposed rollback of car-pollution and fuel-efficiency standards will benefit the fuel industries and car manufacturers.

The average car owners will see gas prices soar. Older vehicles that stay in use will continue to contribute to carbon emissions, and industry will continue to manufacture vehicles that get relatively few miles per gallon. For those who can afford it and care about the environment, a good investment is a fuel-efficient vehicle.

As the owner of a hybrid car, I only tank up about once every few months, can drive 20 to 30 miles on electric, charge my car at home and am free of most maintenance costs.

We should be proud that Maine is one of 13 states that adopted stronger standards to reduce air pollution and increase fuel efficiency, following the lead of California. We are also one of nine states to adopt standards for zero-emissions vehicles.

Don’t let aggressive corporate lobbyists and special-interest industries force us into backpedaling. You may not be able to buy a fuel-efficient vehicle, but you can write your U.S. senators and U.S. representatives and let your voice be heard.

Diane Schetky, M.D.