Today the USC Schwarzenegger Institute for State and Global Policy congratulated California’s citizens and businesses for cutting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to 1990 levels four years before the 2020 deadline mandated by AB32: The Global Warming Solutions Act.
“California has shown the way forward to clean the air and pump up the economy. Surpassing our 2020 emissions goal ahead of schedule while our economy grows by a nation-leading 4.9% and our unemployment rate is at a historic low should send a message to politicians all over the country: you don’t have to re-invent the wheel – just copy us,” said former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who signed AB 32 into law in 2006. “Business will boom and lives will be saved. Mary Nichols and CARB should be congratulated, and Fran Pavley and the Golden State leaders involved in our efforts all should be proud – along with every Californian.”
The passage of AB 32 was a watershed moment in California and U.S. history. The law requires a steep reduction in GHG emissions and was the first program in the U.S. to take a comprehensive, long-term approach to addressing climate change while protecting the environment and building the economy. Implementation of AB 32 was driven by California’s Air Resources Board (CARB), which under the leadership of Chair Mary Nichols successfully established California’s carbon market and laid the foundation for California’s environmental future.
“Clean energy policy isn’t a choice between a healthy environment and a strong economy. Arnold was right when he said, ‘the science is in, the debate is over, and the time for action is now.’ It was an honor to work with my legislative colleagues and the Governor to pass this important law,” said AB 32 author and former State Senator Fran Pavley.
“Twelve years ago Governor Schwarzenegger brought Democrats and Republicans together to set America’s most ambitious and rigorous greenhouse gas emissions goals. AB 32’s success shows just how important bipartisan collaboration is to creating and achieving great – and lasting – public policy,” said Governor Schwarzenegger’s Chief of Staff Daniel Ketchell.
For more information on AB 32 and today’s announcement, please visit the California Air Resources Board’s press release and the San Francisco Chronicle’s “California Slashes Emissions, Hits Major Greenhouse Gas Goal Years Early.”