SACRAMENTO, Calif. (December 11, 2008) – The California Air Resources Board voted to adopt the nation’s first comprehensive, binding statewide plan to curb global warming by reducing emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. Adoption of the bi-partisan Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32) “scoping plan” is an important milestone before regulators flesh out the sector-by-sector rules in greater detail with most rules taking effect in 2012. The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is an original co-sponsor of the groundbreaking legislation, authored by then Assembly members Fran Pavley and Fabian Nunez and signed in to law in 2006.
California has been a leader in energy efficiency, and implementing the scoping plan enables the state to go even further. With policies designed to increase energy efficiency and renewable energy, stimulate investment in clean technologies, and create green jobs, the scoping plan helps make California companies more internationally competitive and less vulnerable to volatile fossil fuel prices.
“California’s action today sets the stage for national action to combat global warming with effective legislation,” said Annie Notthoff, NRDC’s California advocacy director. “California is sending a message to Congress that we can fight global warming and invest in a clean energy economy that spurs job growth and economic security. Not only will other states be watching California, but the world will be watching to see us take this leap forward to reduce global warming.”
With the adoption of the scoping plan to implement AB 32, California is leading the country and the world in its effort to curb global warming through a comprehensive package of policies. This blueprint for action will strengthen California’s economy, improve air quality and public health, help Californians use energy more efficiently, and make the state the hub of clean energy technology development -- all while working to curb global warming.
By investing in solar panels, electric cars and fuel cells, harnessing wind and solar power, and building energy efficient buildings, companies will create jobs as they combat climate change. The University of California, Berkeley, recently reported that California’s energy efficiency policies over the last thirty-five years saved consumers $56 billion, created 1.5 million jobs and generated $45 billion in payroll. The same report also confirms that increasing California’s energy efficiency just one percent annually will expand the Gross State Product by approximately $76 billion, boost household income by as much as $48 billion and create more than 403,000 new jobs.
For more information, read Audrey Chang’s blog at: http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/achang/