Monday, November 12, 2012

Business energy tax, Proposition 39 - most of us voted yes

Silicon Valley Mercury News/Paul Rogers, 11/10/12. "California landmark global warming law becomes real this week with first cap-and-trade auctions."

For more than 40 years, California has led the nation in environmental regulation, from passing the toughest coastal protection laws to America's first rules banning leaded gasoline.

Clean energy
Now, this week -- after Hurricane Sandy pushed the issue of climate change back into the national spotlight -- California will become the first state to begin requiring a broad range of businesses to reduce their greenhouse gas pollution.  At 10 a.m. Wednesday, the California Air Resources Board is scheduled to hold its first auction to sell pollution allowances under the state's landmark cap-and-trade law. 

The idea is simple: The state sets an overall "cap" for California's greenhouse gas emissions, and companies must buy.  "For the first time, business will begin to understand what it means to put a price on carbon," said Stanley Young, a spokesman for the California Air Resources Board. "The program rewards efficiency. It will help move California away from its dependence on fossil fuels and toward a clean-energy economy."or sell credits to account for how much they pollute. Those that pollute more must clean up or pay more.  Read Article. 

Polluted energy
Related background -  Silicon Valley Mercury News/Dana Hull, 11/11/12. "Mercury News Interview:  Mary Nichols of the California Air Resources Board."   "SACRAMENTO -- Mary Nichols, chairwoman of the California Air Resources Board, is widely regarded as one of the most knowledgeable and influential clean air and climate regulators in the United States. In 2006, California adopted AB 32, also known as the Global Warming Solutions Act, which laid the foundation for a cap-and-trade program that sets lower limits on companies' greenhouse gas emissions and allows those who emit less than their cap to sell permits to those who exceed their limits. The first state auction of emissions permits will be held Wednesday."   Read Article. 

Reference -  Proposition 39.. KCET Southern California Public television explanation. And, California Environmental Protection Agency, Air Resources Board.

Related article - The Christian Science Monitor, 11/8/12. "California Proposition 39 results in $2.5 billion for energy efficiency." "California Proposition 39 results: 60 percent of voters approve measure to close tax loophole and fund clean energy and energy efficiency projects in public buildings. For a tax measure, California Proposition 39 had surprisingly little organized opposition."  Includes an optional knowledge based 30 question quiz about the effects of global climate change.  

Posted by Kathy Meeh

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