Posts Tagged: carbon

News

California’s winding road ahead to ‘carbon neutrality’

A photo illustration of carbon-neutral wind power, and fossil-fuel power generation. (Photo: satit_srihin, via Shutterstock)

California is known across the country as a trendsetter in climate regulations, with tough emissions standards and sweeping environmental protections. Freshman state Sen. Dave Cortese (D-San Jose), however, is pushing for more ambitious carbon-neutral rules that could move California further ahead of the rest of the nation. The effort, praised by environmentalists,  has drawn fire from utility workers and gas companies.

Opinion

Fight climate change, preserve nature in one stroke

The forest and fog of Humboldt County. (Photo: Ethan Daniels, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: This week, Governor Newsom announced a first-in-the-nation pledge to protect 30% of the state’s land and water by 2030. This historic executive order will require significant conservation action from our leaders. Thankfully, numerous Members of Congress are currently working to pass legislation to protect critical public lands and waters across the state which would help California meet our new “30×30” target.

Opinion

How did the air fare in cap-and-trade?

Air pollution over Suisun Bay as seen from Briones Regional Park, Contra Costa County. (Photo: Sundry Photography, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: The bills (AB 398 and AB 617) that Gov. Jerry Brown signed on July 25 and 26 represent the culmination of years of debate in the Capitol over global warming and air quality. Now that those bills have become law, what have we learned?

Opinion

The pitfalls of overregulation

A power plant in Manhattan Beach, shortly after its 2012 opening. (Photo: Luc Mena)

OPINION: Recognizing the need to reduce the burdens of overregulation to spur our nation’s economy, Congress put on the top of their legislative agenda the REINS Act, which would require the House and Senate to approve any major regulation before it can go into effect. California — no stranger to abundant regulations and the increasing consolidation of power in state agencies promulgating an ever-growing list of major regulations — must also rein in overregulation the way Congress is trying to do to revitalize job creation throughout our state.

News

Pavley’s legacy: premier warrior fighting greenhouse gases

Fran Pavley and former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger at a Capitol news conference in 2009. Photo: Rich Pedroncelli/AP

As a longtime former middle school teacher, Fran Pavley thought she would focus her energies on education when she got elected to the California Legislature 15 years ago.
But Robert Hertzberg, who was then Assembly speaker, gave the Southern California politician some advice. “He said we have several champions on education, we need you to focus on the environment,” Pavley said. She did.

Opinion

Low auction result helps legal case for cap-and-trade

A smog-tinged view in black and white of Century City, Beverly Hills and West Los Angeles. (Photo: Trekandshoot, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: When the California Air Resources Board released the results of its May auction of carbon allowances, audible gasps from around the state could be heard from the space station. I kid – but only just a little. The auction results did in fact create a great shock: many had expected at least half a billion dollars to be collected at the quarterly auction, but the auction generated only about ten million dollars. But here’s the truth: The super-low May auction result should actually help the State’s legal defense of cap-and-trade.

Opinion

The attack of the super-pollutants

A powerplant at sunset. (Photo: David Crockett)

OPINION: As Hollywood brings a new crop of super-hero movies to our theaters, state policymakers are considering action against a group of particularly nefarious villains known as “super-pollutants.” These contaminants, including black carbon and methane, are both rapidly warming our planet and also damaging human health.

Opinion

Affordable housing: A tool to fight smog, traffic

An illustration of the affordable housing issue. (Nata-Lia, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: We generally think it a big success when public policy successfully fixes a serious problem. Right now, smart California policies are effectively tackling three major issues at once: housing, traffic, and climate change. Anyone not living under a rock knows that California faces an unprecedented crisis in housing affordability.

Opinion

LCFS: A crucial tool to fight climate change

California motorists in a traffic jam. (Photo: Shutterstock)

OPINION: Just as the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard requires electric utilities to phase in a specific amount of clean energy in our electricity mix, the LCFS mandates that the oil industry phase in cleaner fuels to tackle the state’s biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions: the fuel that runs our cars, trucks, and buses.

Analysis

Brown’s transportation budget celebrates the car

A traffic jam in downtown Los Angeles. (Photo: Prayitno, Wikimedia)

Weeks after returning from the Paris summit on climate change where he was hailed as a leader in the movement to limit greenhouse gases, Gov. Jerry Brown has proposed a new transportation budget that celebrates the car. In 2016-17, Brown wants to spend $16 billion on transportation, and most of that would go toward making it easier for people to drive. The Democratic governor wants to build new roads and highways and repave old ones, and use more technology to speed traffic.

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