The controversy over efforts to force local governments and businesses in California to take global warming into account, initiated by environmental groups and by state Atttorney General Jerry Brown-- and blogged about previously here at Warming Law-- has taken on a new twist this week:
Even the state's long overdue budget is being held up partly by controversies over climate change, including state Attorney General Jerry Brown's intervention in blueprints for road construction, home building and oil refineries.
The outcome likely will set the tone for similar debates nationwide. Analysts said the results could have a major effect on development in California, although no one is sure whether Brown's strategy will do much to reduce global warming.
[Brown] said his goal is to get local agencies to create solutions that make sense in their particular settings. The possibilities include planting more trees and relying more on renewable energy sources.
The Union Tribune's take is fairly comprehensive, covering plaudits from local environmental groups, Governor Schwarzennegger's stand that Brown has gone "too far," and the efforts by a group of legislators to hold up the state's budget if this and some other issues of particular significance to Warming Law readers aren't addressed:
In the Legislature, Senate Republicans are withholding votes for the state budget partly to force Democrats to rein in Brown. They also want to provide relief for developers, who are waiting to see what restrictions the Air Resources Board will adopt to lower greenhouse-gas emissions.
“It is not unlike getting a speeding ticket when no speed limit has been determined and no signage has been posted,” Republicans said in a statement issued Thursday.
State Sen. Bob Dutton, R-Rancho Cucamonga, is negotiating for legislation that would bar various interests – including Brown – from using greenhouse-gas emissions to block projects or regional growth plans.
The potential for local planning ordinances to help curb global warming emissions is a fairly new area with lots of potential, but many complications will neeed to be worked out along the way, as we're seeing out in California. You can expect to hear more from us on this subject, along with continued coverage of the current stalemate, down the line.