California close to lawsuit as EPA prepares emission standard

| 10/19/2007

California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger says his state is poised to sue the Environmental Protection Agency in order to enforce a new standard on carbon monoxide emissions for cars and light trucks.

California has waited two years for the EPA to act on the state’s request to enforce a 30 percent reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from cars and light trucks.

According to the San Jose Mercury News, Schwarzenegger “believes we can’t afford to wait any longer,” and is ready to file a lawsuit to force action, according to Schwarzenegger spokesman Bill Maile.

Last spring, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down the EPA’s argument that it couldn’t regulate greenhouse gases as a pollutant.

Debate over California’s greenhouse gas law came to a boil this summer after Rep. Henry Waxman, D-CA, exposed behind-the-scenes politicking by the Department of Transportation and Secretary Mary Peters to scuttle the environmental law.

California has special permission to enact tougher environmental laws, although it must obtain an EPA waiver to do so. Other states can choose to adopt California’s environmental laws.

Fourteen other states reportedly have recently adopted California’s greenhouse gas emissions law.

– By Charlie Morasch, staff writer