SACRAMENTO, CA – Senator Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens), chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, released this statement after committee members approved AB 617 and AB 398 to extend California’s cap and trade program and establish a strong, statewide program to address air pollution in California’s most impacted communities. The governor’s office estimates that the program could raise $1.5 billion for reducing emissions and pollution:
“We all know that climate pollution is warming the Earth and causing systemic damage to the world’s environment. With Washington, D.C., abandoning America’s environmental leadership, California is building the western front to combat localized pollution and global warming.
“The entire world is looking at us, and the two bills passed today will keep us on track to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 40% below 1990 levels by 2030.
“As a child of immigrants from some of the most polluted areas of our state, I will continue to demand that we invest cap and trade revenue to reduce emissions from trucks and transit corridors like those linking the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles to the rest of the country.
“The market-based cap and trade program is the most cost-effective means to achieve our dual goal of curbing emissions while protecting consumers from high energy and fuel costs.
“The opportunity that we have is to demonstrate that people from our communities are determining their own destiny and moving landmark legislation that improves the quality of life for all people in California.”