Disadvantaged Communities to Benefit from the Services of California’s Greenhouse Gas Law
Warming temperature and increase in heat lead Southern California to spring. As the lawmakers in California move ahead to transform their state into a national policy leader typically on global climate change and atmospheric emissions, some environmental activists expect some questions to be answered before plans turn into actions.
Last year in September, a Senate Bill 32 was signed by the state governor Jerry Brown. The bill demanded the state to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions up to 40 percent by 2030. The state is in due course of executing the process via Cap-and-trade program.
As California works hard to reduce the greenhouse gas emission, it uses the cap-and-trade program for capping co-pollutants. The “Cap” is referred to a set statewide limit for the amount of greenhouse gas emissions caused because of certain industries. This program will get stricter in the future. To fulfill the state restrictions and to ensure that no rules are broken, the companies are left with three choices: buy allowances and continue to release the gases, reduce emissions, or attain “offsets” that allow them to cover up for exceeding emissions in a certain area with considerable reductions somewhere else.
A brief study conducted by the University of Southern California discovered that during the initial two years of the cap and trade program in 2013, above three quarter offsets decided to continue the projects outside California. On the other hand, factories that gained the permission to continue with the emission of greenhouse gases released equivalent amount of “co-pollutants.” According to the study, during the first year of this program, the greenhouse gas emissions increased specifically in communities that surrounded industrial areas.
The state also now identifies areas with increased emissions using assessment tools that effectively evaluate demographic, socioeconomic data, census tract, health, and environment data across California. This has vastly benefited the disadvantaged communities of the state.
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