California Candidate Vows to Suspend State Global Warming Initiatives

SACRAMENTO, Oct. 5 (UPI) — California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman’s vow to suspend the state’s global warming initiative may not be easy to implement, advocates say.

The Republican candidate for governor has said she would move to suspend California’s landmark 2006 law, signed by current Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, on the first day she took office. But the law’s language and a probable court battle may make that promise hard to keep, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported Monday.

Known as AB 32, the law gives unprecedented authority to the California Air Resources Board to implement a broad range of regulations aimed at reducing emissions. A provision allows the governor to slow down implementation, but only under “extraordinary circumstances, catastrophic events or threat of significant economic harm.”

“There’s no evidence that says there will be significant economic harm,” Cliff Rechtschaffen, a California lawyer who specializes in emissions litigation, told the newspaper, adding that it would be difficult to prove “economic disaster” given the “significant” and “catastrophic” qualifiers.

But the threat of significant economic damage to the state is there, the California Manufacturers and Technology Association insists.

Copyright 2009 by United Press International

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