Would Californians be Better Off with a Fuel Tax instead of Cap-and-Trade?

Steinberg’s surprising proposal for California climate regulation

Climate regulation drama!  Sen. Darrell Steinberg is floating a proposal that would change California law to take transportation fuels out of the cap-and-trade program, and to enact a new fuels tax instead.  As background, distributors of those fuels are slated to join the cap-and-trade program in 2015, meaning they would need allowances to cover their …


Bisphenol-A in baby bottles . . . and in Sigg bottles (!)

The chemical bisphenol-A (BPA), commonly found in polycarbonate plastics and other household containers, is the subject of a new bill in California because of its potential adverse health effects.  BPA hasbeen linked through animal testing to serious health problemsinvolving behavior, brain development, reproduction and heart function. Environmental advocacy groups such as the Environmental Working Group, …


Climate change breaking news: EPA grants California waiver to regulate GHG emissions from cars

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has taken an important step toward addressing climate change and improving our nation’s automobile fuel economy, by granting California and at least 14 other states a waiver allowing them to regulate automobile greenhouse gas emissions.  This was not unexpected, given the recent passage of federal legislation with standards similar to …


Why won’t Arnold back smog checks for motorcycles?

This is a law blog, so call this post Easy Rider v. Planet Saver.  The California legislature is considering a bill (SB 435, sponsored by Sen. Fran Pavley of the clean-car “Pavley Regs” fame) requiring motorcyles to undergo bienniel smog checks, just like cars and trucks do. The bill would take aim at a significant remaining source …


A Wavering Federal Policy on Climate Change?

President Obama yesterday made official (sort of) his plan to fulfill a campaign pledge to grant the State of California authority to adopt pioneering greenhouse gas emission controls for vehicular sources.  That announcement, while expected, is a breath of fresh air when it comes to state-federal environmental policymaking.  It comes after eight frustrating years in …