The New York Times had a fantastic story today about California’s recently approved greenhouse gas legislation and what it could mean for the economy

Supporters say the state is setting an example by taking a first step toward cutting carbon dioxide emissions produced by burning oil and coal.

Critics say the legislation is a wash. With China and India rapidly developing, they argue, the state (and the country) aren’t going to have much success reversing global warming.

The Times‘ Felicity Barringer says:

Whether all this is visionary or deluded depends on one’s perspective. This is the state that in the early 1970’s jump-started the worldwide adoption of catalytic converters, the devices that neutralize most smog-forming chemicals emitted by tailpipes. This is the state whose per capita energy consumption has been almost flat for 30 years, even as per capita consumption has risen 50 percent nationally.

Taking on global warming is a tougher challenge. Though California was second in the nation only to Texas in emissions of carbon dioxide in 2001, and 12th in the world, it produced just 2.5 percent of the world’s total. At best, business leaders asked in a legislative hearing, what difference could California’s cuts make? And at what cost?

Give the story a read here.


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