Climate Change Legislation California

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California Climate Change Legislation

Donald Trump’s rejection of the Paris climate accord while disappointing will not have a huge impact on California’s day-to-day climate change policy.

California’s climate policy is second to none and already years ahead of the voluntary measures the United States agreed to by signing the Paris agreement in 2016. The exit from the agreement by the United States’ will not change that. This is because California is obligated by its own laws to make deeper emissions cuts than what would have been its share of national emissions reductions under the Paris accord. And the state’s Governor, Jerry Brown, with elected officials from Congress on down to local municipalities are committed to strengthening California’s pro active legislation on climate action even more.


Governor Jerry Brown Climate Change Legislation


We are talking about the big world of avoiding climate catastrophe, but we are talking about the immediate world of people living in Riverside, Los Angeles and other places. This is big. It is big because it is global in scope, but it is also big because it is local in application. This is going to be a long march to transition the entire modern world to a decarbonized future. It’s important, and we’re doing it in California.
Gov. Jerry Brown

Jerry Brown California's Cap Trade Program

Former Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Gov. Jerry Brown are both cap-and-trade proponents.



More recently Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation on July 25, 2017 extending California’s Cap-and-Trade Program, solidifying the state’s battle against global warming and filling a leadership void on climate policy left open by President Donald Trump.

The legislation, Assembly Bill 398, will keep cap and trade operating until 2030 rather than letting it expire in 2020. The five-year-old program, the only one of its kind in the country, requires refineries, power plants and factories to acquire permits for each ton of greenhouse gases they emit, reducing emissions and raising revenue for other climate change policies.

“You’re here witnessing one of the key milestones in turning around this carbonized world into a decarbonized sustainable future,” Gov. Brown said.

In 2006, at the same location on on Treasure Island, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed Assembly Bill 32, which provided the foundation for cap and trade. Schwarzenegger, a Republican, joined Brown on Tuesday, providing a bipartisan display of continuity.


History of California’s Climate Change Legislation

Chronological Record July 26, 2017 – September 27, 2006

source : climatechange.ca.gov


Date Legislation PDF Description
July 26, 2017 Assembly Bill 617 (Christina Garcia, Chapter 136, Statutes of 2017)

Companion to Cap-and-Trade

Extension Establishes a groundbreaking program to measure and reduce air pollution from mobile and stationary sources at the neighborhood level in the communities most impacted by air pollutants. Requires the Air Resources Board to work closely with local air districts and communities to establish neighborhood air quality monitoring networks and to develop and implement plans to reduce emissions. The focus on community-based air monitoring and emission reductions will provide a national model for enhanced community protection.

July 25, 2017 Assembly Bill 398 (Eduardo Garcia, Chapter 135, Statutes of 2017)

Cap-and-Trade Extension

Extends and improves the Cap and Trade Program, which will enable the state to meet its 2030 emission reduction goals in the most cost-effective manner. Furthermore, extending the Cap and Trade Program will provide billions of dollars in auction proceeds to invest in communities across California.

Sept 19, 2016 Senate Bill 1383 (Lara, Chapter 395, Statutes of 2016)

Short-lived Climate Pollutants

Establishes statewide reduction targets for short-lived climate pollutants.

Sept 8, 2016 Assembly Bill 197 (Eduardo Garcia, Chapter 250, Statutes of 2016)

Greenhouse Gas Regulations

Prioritizes direct emission reductions from large stationary sources and mobile sources.

Sept 8, 2016 Senate Bill 32 (Pavley, Chapter 249, Statutes of 2016)

Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction Target for 2030

Establishes a statewide greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction target of 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030.

October 7, 2015 Senate Bill 350 (De León, Chapter 547, Statutes of 2015)

Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act of 2015

Establishes targets to increase retail sales of renewable electricity to 50 percent by 2030 and double the energy efficiency savings in electricity and natural gas end uses by 2030.

Sept 21, 2014 Senate Bill 605 (Lara, Chapter 523, Statutes of 2014)

Short-lived Climate Pollutants

Requires the State Air Resources Board to complete a comprehensive strategy to reduce emissions of short-lived climate pollutants by January 1, 2016.

Sept 21, 2014 Senate Bill 1275, (De León, Chapter 530, Statutes of 2014)

Charge Ahead California Initiative

Establishes a state goal of 1 million zero-emission and near-zero-emission vehicles in service by 2020. Amends the enhanced fleet modernization program to provide a mobility option. Establishes the Charge Ahead California Initiative requiring planning and reporting on vehicle incentive programs, and increasing access to and benefits from zero-emission vehicles for disadvantaged, low-income, and moderate-income communities and consumers.

Sept 21, 2014 Senate Bill1204 (Lara, Chapter 524, Statutes of 2014)

California Clean Truck, Bus, and Off-Road Vehicle and Equipment Technology Program

Creates the California Clean Truck, Bus, and Off-Road Vehicle and Equipment Technology Program funded by the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund for development, demonstration, precommercial pilot, and early commercial deployment of zero- and near-zero emission truck, bus, and off-road vehicle and equipment technologies, with priority given to projects benefiting disadvantaged communities.

Sept 28, 2013 Assembly Bill 8 (Perea, Chapter 401, Statutes of 2013)

Alternative Fuel and Vehicle Technologies: Funding Programs

Extends until January 1, 2024, extra fees on vehicle registrations, boat registrations, and tire sales in order to fund the AB 118, Carl Moyer, and AB 923 programs that support the production, distribution, and sale of alternative fuels and vehicle technologies and air emissions reduction efforts. The bill suspends until 2024 ARB’s regulation requiring gasoline refiners to provide hydrogen fueling stations and appropriates up to $220 million, of AB 118 money to create a hydrogen fueling infrastructure in the state.

Sept 28, 2013 Assembly Bill 1092 (Levine, Chapter 410, Statutes of 2013)

Building Standards: Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure

Requires the Building Standards Commission to adopt mandatory building standards for the installation of future electric vehicle charging infrastructure for parking spaces in multifamily dwellings and nonresidential development.

Sept 30, 2012 Senate Bill 535 (De León, Chapter 830, Statutes of 2012)

Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund and Disadvantaged Communities

Requires the California Environmental Protection Agency to identify disadvantaged communities; requires that 25% of all funds allocated pursuant to an investment plan for the use of moneys collected through a cap-and-trade program be allocated to projects that benefit disadvantaged communities and 10 those 25% be use within disadvantaged communities; and requires the Department of Finance to include a description of how these requirements are fulfilled in an annual report.

Sept 30, 2012 Assembly Bill 1532 (J. Perez, Chapter 807, Statutes of 2012)

Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund in the Budget

Requires the Department of Finance to develop and submit to the Legislature an investment plan every three years for the use of the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund; requires revenue collected pursuant to a market-based compliance mechanism to be appropriated in the Annual Budget Act; requires the department to report annually to the Legislature on the status of projects funded; and specifies that findings issued by the Governor related to “linkage” as part of a market-base compliance mechanism are not subject to judicial review.

April 12, 2011 Senate Bill X1-2 (Simitian, Chapter 1, Statutes of 2011) Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr. signed Senate Bill X1-2 into law to codify the ambitious 33 percent by 2020 goal. SBX1-2 directs California Public Utilities Commission’s Renewable Energy Resources Program to increase the amount of electricity generated from eligible renewable energy resources per year to an amount that equals at least 20% of the total electricity sold to retail customers in California per year by December 31, 2013, 25% by December 31, 2016 and 33% by December 31, 2020. The new RPS goals applies to all electricity retailers in the state including publicly owned utilities (POUs), investor-owned utilities, electricity service providers, and community choice aggregators. This new RPS preempts the California Air Resources Boards’ 33 percent Renewable Electricity Standard.
Sept 29, 2011 Assembly Bill 1504 (Skinner, Chapter 534, Statutes of 2010)

Forest Resources and Carbon Sequestration

Bill requires Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and Air Resources Board to assess the capacity of its forest and rangeland regulations to meet or exceed the state’s greenhouse goals, pursuant to AB 32.

Sept 30, 2008 Senate Bill 375 (Steinberg, Chapter 728, Statutes of 2008)

Sustainable Communities & Climate Protection Act of 2008

Requires Air Resources Board to develop regional greenhouse gas emission reduction targets for passenger vehicles. ARB is to establish targets for 2020 and 2035 for each region covered by one of the State’s 18 metropolitan planning organizations.

October 14, 2007 Assembly Bill 118 (Núñez, Chapter 750, Statutes of 2007)

Alternative Fuels and Vehicles Technologies

The bill would create the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program, to be administered by the Energy Commission, to provide funding to public projects to develop and deploy innovative technologies that transform California’s fuel and vehicle types to help attain the state’s climate change policies.

August 24, 2007 Senate Bill 97 (Dutton, Chapter 187, Statutes of 2007) Directs Governor’s Office of Planning and Research to develop CEQA guidelines “for the mitigation of greenhouse gas emissions or the effects of greenhouse gas emissions.”
July 18. 2006 Assembly Bill 1803 (Committee on Budget, Chapter 77, Statutes of 2006)

Greenhouse gas inventory transferred to Air Resources Board from the Energy Commission.

August 21, 2006 Senate Bill 1 (Murray, Chapter 132, Statutes of 2006)

California’s Million Solar Roofs Plan

SB1 directs PUC and CEC to expand this program to more customers, and requiring the state’s municipal utilities to create their own solar rebate programs. This bill would require beginning January 1, 2011, a seller of new homes to offer the option of a solar energy system to all customers negotiating to purchase a new home constructed on land meeting certain criteria and to disclose certain information.

Sept 26, 2006 Senate Bill 107 (Simitian, Chapter 464, Statutes of 2006)

California Public Utilities Commission’s Renewable Energy Resources Program

SB 107 increases the amount of renewable electricity (Renewable Portfolio Standard) generated per year, from 17% to an amount that equals at least 20% of the total electricity sold to retail customers in California per year by December 31, 2010.

Sept 27, 2006 Assembly Bill 32 (Núñez, Chapter 488, Statutes of 2006)

California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006

This bill would require Air Resources Board (ARB) to adopt a statewide greenhouse gas emissions limit equivalent to the statewide greenhouse gas emissions levels in 1990 to be achieved by 2020. ARB shall adopt regulations to require the reporting and verification of statewide greenhouse gas emissions and to monitor and enforce compliance with this program. AB 32 directs Climate Action Team established by the Governor to coordinate the efforts set forth under Executive Order S-3-05 to continue its role in coordinating overall climate policy.

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