Becky Kelley directs the Climate and Clean Energy Agenda at the Washington Environmental Council. Any opinions expressed are her own.
We could smell the sweet winds of change all the way up in Washington State last week, when California adopted final rules to implement a cap and trade program to reduce climate pollution across its economy, beginning in 2013.
California got it right. Cap and trade is a policy at the scale of the problem: big, complex policy to deal with a big, complex problem.
The state’s action to embark on cap and trade, along with a suite of other essential clean energy, energy efficiency and clean transportation polices, matters far beyond its borders.
It is especially important in light of national legislative inaction. With so much at stake, it is extraordinary to consider that Congress is not taking action on climate change to protect Americans’ interests across the country.