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11/02/2010 10:32 AM     print story email story  

California Regulators Release Cap-and-Trade Proposal News

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) on Thursday released its long-awaited proposed greenhouse gas cap-and-trade regulation.

The regulation has been in development for four years, and the release begins a public comment period culminating in a December 16 public hearing in Sacramento, California, at which the Board will consider adopting the proposed program.

However, implementation of the regulation depends in large part on what California voters do today at the ballot box. If Proposition 23 passes, it will put California's landmark climate bill (AB 32) and the cap-and-trade program on hold until the state unemployment rate drops to 5.5%. And Proposition 26, if passed, would eliminate funding for AB 32.

The cap-and-trade program is a key part of CARB's Scoping Plan under AB 32. It provides an overall limit on the emissions from sources responsible for 85% of California’s greenhouse gas emissions. CARB said the program allows covered entities the greatest flexibility for compliance, stimulates clean energy technologies, increases energy security and independence, protects public health and will drive clean, clean energy jobs in California. It is designed to work in collaboration with other complementary policies that expand energy efficiency programs, reduce vehicle emissions, and encourage innovation. 

“This program is a crucial element of reducing our greenhouse gas emissions. It will help drive innovation, create more green jobs and clean up our air and environment” said ARB Chairman Mary D. Nichols. “We have worked closely with all interested parties and stakeholders to make sure that the program provides flexibility to reach our emissions reduction goals while taking into consideration the current economic climate and the need to fully protect California’s economy.”

California and New Mexico are currently the only states on track to begin cap and trade in 2012 under the Western Climate Initiative. Republican governors in Arizona and Utah have withdrawn their states from participation in the regional cap-and-trade initiative, and there is considerable risk that gubernatorial elections taking place today could further weaken the WCI.

A brief overview of the cap-and-trade program is available from CARB at the link below.


Reader Comments (1)

Earl Richards

Date Posted:
11/02/10 04:39 PM

PROP 26 is just as destructive as PROP 23. Prop 26 is a treacherous, Big Oil rip-off, which "passes the buck" from oil corporation, clean-up fees to the taxpayer, who will pay the oil recycling fees, the materials hazards fees and other fees. If you do not understand the ambiguities and the intrigues behind Prop 26, then, vote no. Power to the people. Shell, BP and Exxon Mobil are silent partners behind Prop 26.

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