Friday, September 01, 2006

Schwarzenegger to sign most restrictive CO2 emmisions bill in nation

***Updated and Bumped*** Scroll down for updates.

Last week I gave Arnie a thumbs up for his solar power initiative that makes new home manufacturers offer the panels as an option on new construction, but this bill could be disasterous for the California economy.

... Although the deal in California is strongly opposed by Republicans in the Legislature and many business leaders across the state, it ensured that a bill on the restrictions would be passed before the legislative session ended Thursday and would be signed by Schwarzenegger, the leaders said Wednesday.

The first major controls are scheduled to begin in 2012, with the aim of reducing the emissions to their level of 1990. The legislation allows for incentives to businesses to help reach the goals, but opponents warn that the state may be sacrificing its economic interests for a quixotic goal.

"If our manufacturers leave, whether for North Carolina or China, and they take their greenhouse gases with them, we might not have solved the problem but exacerbated it instead," said Allan Zaremberg, president of the state Chamber of Commerce, which led opposition to the measure.

I can't help but agree with that. I was a big fan of Arnold because when he led the recall of Gray Davis, one of his platforms was bringing business back to California. This won't help that. And if business leaves California, some will stay in the US, but how much will go to the cheaper labor, better tax codes, and less restrictive environmental codes? Whether that's Arizona, Nevada, Mexico, or China it's not California.

I guess we don't value our economy that is ranked 10th in the world...

UPDATE @ 3:59pm on 9/1: An interesting article from the utility companies' perspectives. PG&E reversed its position on the bill after a revision was added that would allow for suspension of the law should the economy be "significantly hurt" by the reduction in emissions. The article also points out that PG&E is less likely to be as greatly affected by the bill due to the fact that they don't rely on coal for energy production. The major utilities will be the most affected because of their reliance on coal-fired power whereas smaller, independent producers rely more on natural gas and some renewable resources.