Gov. Jerry Brown directly said so last week when he signed SB 32, the re-written law to battle climate change.
Brown said that residents and businesses were going to feel the “coercive power of government.”
The new law doubles the already ambitious goal of reducing carbon emissions below 1990 levels to 40 percent by 2030. Previously, it was a 20 percent reduction by 2020. The state has made progress, but a study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory found that current policies will get only about halfway to the new goal.
Thus you can expect both innovative and draconian approaches. That will be particularly true in trucking and cars where electric cars, despite hefty rebates, make up a tiny portion of the overall fleet.
What’s even worse is that the Legislature continued to empower the state’s Air Resources Board, which is an appointed body, to take the measures it deems necessary without any regard to the economy or impact on the residents.
Those of us who have watched the unrelenting regulation from the Bay Area air board shudder. A number of years ago, that body declared war on wood-burning fireplaces and now has banned them entirely unless they are new models certified for minimal pollution by the EPA and the sole source of heat.
Proponents argue that their theory that man’s activities are causing the climate to change (as opposed to the natural cycles such as two Ice Ages) require these steps. Democratic Sen. Fran Pavley said the reductions under the original climate change bill show that California can have a vibrant economy and meet the goals. That may be true in her area and for her family, but it certainly not is the case statewide.
This time around, experts and academics in the field, warn that it will take dramatically tougher regulations across all sectors of the economy to move the needle and there’s no guarantee.
There’s also no guarantee that the regulations will have the hoped-for effect on carbon emissions and the climate. What is pretty much guaranteed is regulations will be issued without any regard to the impacts on people or the economy.
In addition, this is a state of haves and have-nots. Folks living in the Bay Area working in the technology industry are doing well—you cannot say the same for many people living up and down the great Central Valley as well as poorer residents living in coastal cities.
Brown long has pushed California to the forefront of all things environmental and hopes to leverage this legislation to convince other states to join in his vision.
Generally, I do not go the movies other than on rare occasions. However, I made an exception to see Sully, which describes our hometown “Hero of the Hudson” Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger and the travails he went through after he successfully landed the Airbus 320 in the Hudson River and saved the lives of 155 people.
Clint Eastwood directed the film and Tom Hanks plays Sully. We were seated toward the front of the theater and I originally had planned to move farther back once the film started. I found it so gripping that we never moved.
It a movie worth seeing and a great story that is devoid of tawdry language or sex.
Incidentally, as it relates to the earlier comment, check out the government regulators and investigators.