Environmental Defense: California Establishes Historic Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reporting Program

DECEMBER 7, 2007
1:00 PM

CONTACT: Environmental Defense
Karen Douglas, (916) 492-7076,
Jesus Mena, (415) 293-6097,

California Establishes Historic Greenhouse Gas Emissions Reporting Program
Greenhouse gas emitters must now report pollutant levels to the state

SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA - December 7 - California became the first state in the country that will require industries that emit green house gases to report how much they are spewing into the air, starting in 2008.

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) today set mandatory reporting guidelines for a wide array of emissions sources such as refineries, cement plants, power plants and other large combustion devices. These industries have been reporting other pollutants to CARB for years but the requirement that they report green house gases is a first.

“The new regulations are the foundation for what will probably be the most comprehensive greenhouse gas guidelines in the world,” said Karen Douglas, director of the California Climate Initiative. “This pioneering effort to begin clamping down on global warming pollutants is reflective of California’s leadership both nationally and internationally.”

In other action, CARB also finalized the process of quantifying the amount of greenhouse gases released from all sources in the state in 1990. Quantifying these pollutants in 1990 is critical for implementation of the Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32), which sets the 1990 level as the maximum allowable quantity of global warming pollution in the state for 2020.

Douglas said that, in many ways, this quantification is almost as critical as is the mandatory reporting of green house gases.

“California now has a tangible goal around which it can build regulatory programs for AB 32,” she said. “This data is imperative for programs like cap-and-trade, which give polluters the flexibility to either reduce emissions on-site or purchase reductions from others who have over-complied with emissions limits.”

Environmental Defense, a leading national nonprofit organization, represents more than 500,000 supporters. Since 1967, Environmental Defense has linked science, economics, law and innovative private-sector partnerships to create breakthrough solutions to the most serious environmental problems.