The California Assembly recently approved Senate Bill 32, which extends until 2030 the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 signed by Governor Schwarzenegger. SB 32 will continue to support "climate smart" agriculture as well as energy efficiency, renewables, and other ways to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
Without extension of this law, the future for such programs as the Healthy Soils Initiative, the State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program, the Sustainable Agricultural Lands Conservation Program, and the Dairy Methane Program was in doubt-- all important programs for farmers in Fresno County and the Central Valley.
Another historic piece of climate legislation, Assembly Joint Resolution 43, was recently passed by our California legislature. It asks Congress to place a fee on carbon fuels and return the money to U.S. households. Similar policies in British Columbia and elsewhere have shown that a “revenue-neutral” program encourages individuals and businesses to adopt cleaner energy use.
Regrettably, neither of my Republican representatives in the California Senate or Assembly voted for either bill. I look forward to the day when climate change legislation can again be a bipartisan achievement.