Global Warming Solutions Act AB 32
Global warming is often a difficult issue to address because there is still significant political debate on carbon dioxide levels correlation to rising global temperatures. Many are still uncertain how much benefit can be obtained from reducing global warming emissions. Similarly there is contention on which countries should take steps to curb their carbon dioxide emissions, particularly with developing countries hesitance to hinder their future industrial progress.
With the threat of global warming increasing every year, the state of California took it upon itself to make efforts to reduce global warming gas emissions such as carbon dioxide (CO2). AB 32 was drafted by Assembly member Fran Pavley and Assembly Speaker Fabio Nunez, which mandated California to reduce its emissions of greenhouse gases. Supporters of the bill argued that the law would energize other states to make similar commitments in turn creating a more “green” economy. Critics of the bill believed it would have a detrimental economic impact and would have an insignificant effect on global warming.
Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger was at the forefront of the efforts to pass the bill and was determined to make California number one in the fight against global warming. He claims, “This is something we owe to our children and our grand children.” (Clean Power Campaign). He signed the first state law capping emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gasses. The state passed the California Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32) with the goal of reducing CO2 emissions to 1990 levels by the end of the decade. The state of California leads the nation in terms of energy emissions standards, however, is also the 12th largest emitter of greenhouse gases worldwide.
With regards to the private sector, global warming gases such as carbon dioxide constitute a negative externality. Currently businesses earn their maximum profit when they pollute the most and...