Global environmental challenges
Air pollution permits back on track in Southern California
California’s Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is working to burnish his green legacy in the Golden State. But one of his latest moves to lift a hold on air pollution permit applications is not likely to make environmentalists happy.
The governor signed a bill late Sunday that allows the agency regulating air pollution along California’s southern coast to start issuing more than 1,200 applications frozen by a state court decision in 2008.
Environmentalists may call the governor’s actions two steps forward, one step back.
But the region’s business community cheered the move on air quality permits. The bill‘s author says it will create 60,000 jobs and $4 billion in economic activity in Southern California. The South Coast Air Quality Management District, which regulates Orange County and parts of Los Angeles, Riverside and San Bernardino counties, believes that the governor’s approval will jump-start the region’s economy.
We wanted to know what readers think about the lifting of the ban and Schwarzenegger’s moves to boost the use of energy from renewable resources. What grade would you put on the governor’s environmental report card?
Photo:Traffic passes downtown Los Angeles on the Interstate-10 freeway. Photo credit: REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson