Southern California environment news and trends

Cap-and-trade getting to nuts and bolts, but Sacramento still seeing climate skeptics, AB 32 opponents

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Molly Peterson/KPCC

California Air Resources Board chief Mary Nichols, whose agency oversees state climate policy efforts under AB 32, outside a conference in Hollywood in 2011.

A discussion about how state lawmakers should dole out cap-and-trade auction proceeds under AB 32, the state's landmark greenhouse gas reduction law, is proceeding in Sacramento. What's interesting is that it's doing so with considerable and continuing opposition to the premise of capping or, for that matter, trading greenhouse gas emissions in the first place.

The bill is AB 1532. By its language at the moment, it provides that proceeds of an auction "shall be used to facilitate the achievement of feasible and cost-effective reductions of greenhouse gas emissions in this state" that maximize economic, enviro, and public health benefits; boost jobs; complement other work to improve air quality; invest in disadvantaged communities; and/or provide opportunities for local agencies, schools, or other community institutions (this actually includes businesses).