May 24, 2005
California has more climate-protection effects under way than any other state, writes Margaret Kriz in National Journal.
Moreover, the state has always considered itself a leader in environmental policy, says Alan Lloyd, secretary of the state Environmental Protection Agency.
Golden State programs or regulations that are on the books or in the works include:
- Automakers will be required to reduce the amount of greenhouse gases emitted by new cars and trucks; the mandate, scheduled to take effect in January, would apply to 2009 models; 11 states are slated to follow.
- Local utility companies contracting to buy power in 2007 or later must provide an estimate of how much more the energy would cost if the state or federal government began regulating greenhouse-gas emissions.
- Power companies will have to generate at least 20 percent of their energy from renewable sources.
- The California Public Employees' Retirement System is asking all companies in its portfolio to disclose data on their carbon dioxide emissions; the board is also supporting shareholder resolutions that seek information on Ford and General Motors' compliance rates with the new greenhouse-gas emissions standards.
Lastly, Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-Calif.) is pushing for state legislation to create rebates and tax credits for homes and business that install solar-power systems. Schwarzenegger is also encouraging automakers to build hydrogen-fueled cars and Californians to buy them. The state has adopted energy-efficiency standards for dozens of products, such as residential ceiling fans and commercial refrigerators.
Source: Margaret Kriz, "Golden-State Rules," National Journal, March 26, 2005.
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