California Moves Ahead With Cap and Trade

ConocoPhillips oil refinery in Rodeo, CA (Photo: Craig Miller)

California has the legal right to move ahead with preparations for cap and trade after all, according to an appellate court decision.  An earlier ruling had required regulators to halt work pending further review, after environmental justice groups brought suit against the Air Resources Board (ARB) over its plans for carbon trading.

Caroline Farrell of the Center on Race, Poverty and the Environment, one of organizations involved in the suit, said she was disappointed by the decision, handed down late Friday.

“We feel like this is a real setback in terms of getting the state to really take advantage of the opportunity to look at alternatives and to really achieve true greenhouse gas emissions reductions,” she said.

Environmental justice groups who brought the suit say that cap and trade would not protect low-income areas and communities of color from localized pollution from power plants.

The new decision allows the state to continue working out the details of the cap & trade program, which could launch as early as next January, while the court considers the crux of the matter: whether the California Air Resources Board has complied with environmental regulations by fully considering alternative strategies for reducing greenhouse gases.

Bill Gallegos, the executive director of Communities for a Better Environment, another of the plaintiffs, said that this newest ruling would not derail his organization’s efforts to “strengthen AB 32.”

“The evidence is that cap and trade is a failure,” he said. “And there’s a better way.  We’d like to see Governor Brown step in and direct the ARB to put a hold on cap and trade.”

Last month, the Sierra Club of California sent a letter to Gov. Brown with a similar request.

ARB spokesman Stanley Young responded to the appellate court decision in a written statement:

Leading to an August 24 Board meeting, ARB is now seeking public comment on the environmental analysis of the alternatives to cap and trade in keeping with ARB’s interest in public participation and informed decision-making.  The court of appeal’s recent stay order allows ARB staff to move ahead on the proposed regulation to keep that option open for the Board.

The cap & trade program is part of California’s landmark global warming law, AB 32, which mandates the state reduce greenhouse emissions 20% below 1990 levels by 2020.  It represents about a fifth of the total emissions reductions called for under AB 32.

  • http://ronkilmartin.wordpress.com Ron Kilmartin

    I wonder what will happen when the truth becomes known; the greenhouse gas causing warming is not CO2. It is water vapor + steam. The effect of CO2 is insignificant. See Timothy Curtin, “Econometrics and the Science of Climate Change 15 May 2011″.. CARB and the Green Fleecers are in for a rude awakening.

    The warmers never understood the fundamentals of statistics, as pointed out in the Wegman Report “Ad hoc Committee Report on the Hockey Stick” Global Climate Reconstruction” NRC, 2006.

    When the warmers and green fleecers are forced out of the way, California will come roaring back!

  • William Craun

    The reality is that we are selling air via carbon exchanges that has no impact on weather or climate, at all.

    The only impact is higher energy costs, higher fees, higher regulations and yes, Al Gore is invested in the company that will run California’s moronic job-killing

    It is the most un-necessary, decetful and dishonest type of theft, the idea that somehow letting bureaucrats and investment banks get wealthy on something that occurs naturally is really something people should be incarcerated for, not given lifetime state jobs with fat salaries, pensions and healthcare for life.

    The reality of radical Environmentalism is that is really a lie of altruism masked in the long-term goals of Marxism. It does not save anything, but it pretends it does, just like every other Communist ploy.

    Al Gore is fat, eats meat, has 4 kids, flies in private jets and lives in multiple giant mansion and is a billioniare via his lie and you are supposed to have a $1,000 per month electric bill and $10/gallon gas to “save” the planet. It’s utter and obscene nonsense.

    Here’s the good news: Those who have something and the brains to leave California will, and are, voting with their feet and leaving in droves. California is so anti-business, but like an addict, needs the private sector to feed the massive, bloated and overpaid state workers and their unionized thug bosses,

    This law is the death knell of California business, the capstone in a 40-year effort to move the state to a 17th century agrarian model of bikes, solar panels and organic carrots while smoking a giant Humboldt joint.

    Jerry “Alzheimer” Brown and the rest of the full-time Stalinists cannot stop taxing, regulating and spending. This is merely symptomatic of the Watermelons…”green on the outside, red on the inside.”