California Energy and Environment Update - March 21, 2011

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Judge puts AB 32 implementation on hold

On Thursday a Superior Court Judge halted the implementation of California’s landmark climate law, AB 32, until the California Air Resources Board (CARB) more thoroughly explains why the cap and trade mechanism was selected for curbing greenhouse gases. The law, the strictest in the nation, requires the state to use a combination of rules and market mechanisms to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by a quarter. In the absence of a federal climate law, environmentalists look at AB 32 as a crucial backstop.

But the implementation of the law was not adequate for a coalition of environmental justice advocates, who argued that a cap-and-trade system would disproportionately and negatively impact air quality in poor and minority neighborhoods, where many petroleum refineries are located. The group of environmentalists argued that a cap-and-trade regime would impose less of a burden on large emitters like refineries.

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Mintz Levin on:

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