By on September 10, 2015

 

California’s ambitious climate change bill was stripped Wednesday night of its toughest provision that would have cut the state’s gasoline consumption 50 percent by 2030, Automotive News is reporting.

A pared down version of California’s wide-rangning transportation bill will reach Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk, but won’t include the gas target nor a plan to fix California’s roads.

The controversial bill was met last month by an automotive lobby that flooded the state with advertisements and money to combat the provisions.

“Oil has won the skirmish. But they’ve lost the bigger battle,” Brown said, according to the LA Times. “Because I am more determined than ever.”

Brown said that he would fight for the plan to cut gas consumption later during his term. He also called for a special session to address California’s roads after his plan to raise $3.6 billion through increased fees and gas taxes failed to advance.

“The roads are going to get fixed,” Brown said, according to the LA Times.

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54 Comments on “Auto Alliance Kills Aggressive California Gas Bill...”


  • avatar
    Sigivald

    “cut the state’s gasoline consumption 50 percent by 2030”

    Yeah, I’m sure the people who *live* in California would have loved how that was to happen, right?

  • avatar
    slance66

    I am so glad I left that hell hole. If this had passed, they’d lose residents even faster.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      Yeah, it often feels like they’re all moving to my state.

    • 0 avatar
      xtoyota

      slance66:
      I left also and never looked back and moved to WI.
      AND WI. let me stay :=)

    • 0 avatar
      Synchromesh

      Who? Who moved out? Can you show me? Because I moved to San Francisco and it’s Armageddon down here with apartments because everyone wants to move in, not out. Same with almost entire Silicon Valley. Even Oakland is getting crowded. Who’s moving out?

      Oh, and I wouldn’t move back to East Coast even for money. Now if there is a hell hole out there – that’d be it.

      • 0 avatar
        thelaine

        The rich and the poor do well in California. Government workers also do pretty well.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Who moved out? The ones who came to my area were retirees (of all kinds) who cashed out of CA, and people who’s CA benefits and subsidies had run out. In the cities of Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Las Cruces the transplants from CA were often illegal aliens (of all kinds) seeking a sanctuary state.

        We’re working hard to help these people move further East to the Blue States asap.

  • avatar
    tonycd

    My sister lives in Calfornia, and she’s all in.

    Honestly, even though I’m a car nut (and one whose car gets lousy gas mileage at that), this is the way the future has to go. I honestly don’t care if I bring all the wingnuts out of the woodwork to post, one after another, that I’m a wingnut. Every country in the world except America has reached an overwhelming public, scientific and political consensus that greenhouse warming is already at a crisis state that’s only going to get worse. We’re talking coastal cities entirely underwater, mid-latitude states and nations turning into Dust Bowl deserts, mass migrations and wars as the world heats up, dries out and wants for food and water.

    Business as usual is toast. And if we continue to insist on it, all of us will be toast. Literally.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      Ever the incurable optimist, I take the fact that we’re at least having debates and beginning to move ever so slowly in the right direction rather than just being quiet and outright allowing the denialists to have free rein as proof that we’re going to be okay. Or if not okay, we’ll at least survive.

    • 0 avatar
      Jeff Weimer

      What if the “overwhelming public, scientific and political consensus” is *wrong*?

      I mean, the Earth has been warmer than today – in recorded history too, and it wasn’t a catastrophe. It’s also been colder, and that wasn’t a catastrophe, either.

      • 0 avatar
        ckb

        To further Jeff Weimer’s point, the earth used to be a cloud of dust loosely orbiting a new star and will be again in a few dozen billion years. Although humans couldn’t survive, much less the present society but hey, the earth is fine right?

        If the consensus is wrong (meaning pretty much all of science is wrong, including that which enables posting on the internet) and we put the work into eliminating the need for fossil fuels anyway we’ll be stuck with a cleaner environment, cheaper energy, and significantly increased global stability. What an awful future.

        • 0 avatar
          Big Al From 'Murica

          Except he stated RECORDED HISTORY…Not billions of years ago before the Solar System as we know it existed.

          • 0 avatar
            Lorenzo

            Recorded history doesn’t go very far. For most of human history, humanity consisted of hunter-gatherers who didn’t keep records, and continuous records only go back to the 1850s in selected societies, and the 1950s in the undeveloped world.

            We don’t have the data needed to prove humans have altered anything. What we know is that for the last three million years, the northern hemisphere has cycled between 100,000 year ice ages and 10,000-15,000 inter-glacials, and we’re 12,000 years into the most recent pause.

            Until we can find the forces that produce that cycle, we really can’t say human activity is strong enough to alter anything.

        • 0 avatar
          rpn453

          You’re assuming that restricting fossil fuels will cause some new and better energy source to appear. Maybe it would, or maybe the common people will just have to live simpler lives.

          But it’s not that “science is wrong”, it’s that they don’t actually know what causes the earth’s climate to change. Why was much of North America covered in miles-thick ice only 20,000 years ago, with a sea level hundreds of feet lower, and not now? Why did we have a couple of beneficial warming periods in the last 2000 years that were even warmer than now?

          If we had existed 120,000 years ago during the last interglacial period, when it was even warmer than now, we’d have done everything we could to avoid the next ice age. But would we even be capable of such a thing? Maybe we should start now. If only there were someone out there who had any idea why our climate regularly and dramatically changes.

        • 0 avatar
          Dan

          “the work into eliminating the need for fossil fuels anyway we’ll be stuck with a cleaner environment, cheaper energy, and significantly increased global stability. What an awful future.”

          That’s the fundamental misconception. There is no cheaper energy, or we’d be using it already. It means much more expensive energy, which means using less of it, which means a lower standard of living.

          For Americans, who are less than 15% of global CO2 output and dropping, we’re already living awfully well. Smaller houses and wearing a sweater indoors in the winter and shittier cars wouldn’t be the end of the world.

          For 4 billion in the developing world who aren’t worried about cars because they don’t even have air conditioning yet, it means that they can’t have them. A notion which goes over every bit as well as you’d expect it to, which is why they don’t even play lip service to warming in the parts of the world without white guilt – and why those parts of the world are merrily expanding their footprints equivalent to the entire US every 12 years.

          The future is awful. De industrializing the West just makes it awfuller.

      • 0 avatar
        carlisimo

        We’re not talking about fire and brimstone here – just failing crops leading to failed states. Some people are arguing that the Syrian civil war and refugee situation in Europe is a result of global warming ruining their agricultural sector, leading to an influx of unemployed Syrians into their cities, which lead to protests and riots, and finally war and hundreds of thousands of people trying to get into Europe. It’s hard to reach that conclusion until it becomes a well-established pattern, but it could.

        There’ve been higher local temperatures in recorded history, but not higher global averages.

        Point is, the earth and humanity are resilient, but societies and economies are not. It may be worth penalizing ourselves a little now in order to reduce the costs later.

        As a Californian, I’m not going to give up gasoline-powered cars. But I did give up commuting in one. It wasn’t that much fun anyway.

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff Waingrow

        I’ll take your opinion over the scientific consensus any day. It’s just common sense.

    • 0 avatar
      jdogma

      CO2 is not a pollutant and it is not a major climate driver. Consider that the 4 main gases in the atmosphere are Nitrogen, Oxygen, water vapor and Argon(1 percent argon). CO2 is a mere 0.04 percent. Everything we eat, the wood in our houses, is made up primarily of carbon that is taken by plants from the atmosphere. Plant growth stops at .02 percent. As for effects, consider that there has been no statistical warming for over 18 years. Hurricanes and tornadoes are at very low levels. None of the chicken little predictions are coming true. Consider also that people add heat to the atmosphere that has nothing to do with CO2’s UV absorption, and the amount of heat added greatly exceeds the contribution from CO2. There are 33 people for every square mile of earth’s surface (including ocean and ice caps). Split equally we would all have a plot ~ 1000 ft x 1000 ft,so yes we heat it, but CO2 is not the problem. It is just easy to tax.

      • 0 avatar
        thelaine

        Yes, and no one, even global warming end of the worlders, has asserted that California’s unilateral efforts to restrict its hydrocarbon use will have any detectable impact on the earth’s climate. The global warming debate is fun but academic. The world has voted. They are using all the oil, coal and gas they can get their hands on. People and nations have chosen not to be poor.

        The people who run California just want more taxes and more control. State taxes on sales, income, carbon(!) and gasoline are already among the highest in the country and the government can’t stop bitching about limited property tax because they want to make that the highest in the nation as well. Industry and the middle class are leaving California. Public emplyees and the rich are staying. The poor and illegal keep coming and are protected and provided with benefits. Meanwhile, the governor wants to save the world from warmth and is doing so on the backs of his private sector working state residents. More power to him. After all, they elected him.

  • avatar
    Jean-Pierre Sarti

    i miss the days when super unleaded was just 20 cents more than regular.

    in my area these days super can be as much as 60-70 cents more per gallon…

  • avatar

    By far the best way to reduce carbon emissions is to tax carbon, and let the market decide where the carbon gets cut. I don’t know exactly what the figures are for California as opposed to the nation, but personal transportation vehicles represent about 15 percent of greenhouse emissions. And the California bill would have allowed corn ethanol to replace gasoline.

    Governor Brown could also reduce greenhouse emissions (or at least keep them from rising) by getting rid of the welcome mat for illegal immigrants. The average immigrant’s greenhouse emissions rise fourfold after arrival in the US (Center for Immigration Studies, 2008).

  • avatar
    tedward

    So common sense prevailed? I’m not a global warming skeptic by any means but this struck me as ideologically driven as opposed to bring a pragmatic and workable piece of legislation. Personally I think California environmentalists were saved from themselves by this early loss. Given the realities of industry turn around times and where battery tech is today this had the makings of major voter backlash come 2030. Also, California doesn’t exist in a bubble, consumers would start buying out of state the second these rules actually affected vehicle choice.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      The bottom line is that less gas for CA means more gas for everyone else. I say go for it!

      Maybe we can get all the fruits and nuts in one state, and one state alone.

      • 0 avatar
        Lorenzo

        California is a separate market. It has its own wells and Alaskan oil is shipped in. The mandated formulation is more expensive to make, so no supplier makes that blend outside of Cali. When Cali has a shortage, no outside supply can fill the shortfall, so prices spike with every spill, fire, or maintenance period that cuts refinery production. The rest of the country has ample supplies of much cheaper gas.

  • avatar
    wmba

    So Californians are in favor of driving on worn-out roads. That’s the upshot. Back in the day (1978) they also decided education was not worth funding properly. Apparently money needed to be harvested from trees instead. That’s when the decline started and Mr Brown was in charge then as well. As an advocate for rationality he seems to be short of persuasive talents, losing every time it matters.

    http://ed100.org/support/prop13/

    • 0 avatar
      Lorenzo

      You’re quite the history book re-writer. Californians want roads maintained with the road tax money they’re already paying, not the bike lanes, light rail and transit centers the money is financing now.

      Nobody voted against schools in 1978. Prop 13 was aimed at cities and counties who re-assessed property repeatedly every time they needed more money. Brown took property tax revenue from cities and used it to finance schools.

      The added money moved per pupil spending from 42nd to 39th of the 50 states, while teachers’ salaries went from 36th to 4th nationally. Meanwhile, cities made up the loss of property taxes by approving retail development and strip malls over housing to get business fees and a bigger share of the sales tax. That made housing prices skyrocket.

  • avatar
    Arminius

    Perhaps Gov. Brown could start by personally reducing his own greenhouse gas emissions by flying commercial.

    http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article27928168.html

  • avatar
    jkross22

    Someone has to go first on this issue, but CA going it alone makes no sense. Brown should focus his efforts on getting other states to have some graduated effort over time, but making willy nilly commitments is just a PR stunt.

    I guess he doesn’t want to talk with the BRIC countries about this.

  • avatar
    CJinSD

    California is screwed as long as there are people stupid enough to vote for Jerry Brown.

    https:// www. youtube.com/watch?v=mKjZZZV5Ack

  • avatar
    craiger

    I met Jerry Brown in the Carnegie Deli in 1992. After chatting for a very short time, he asked me if I would like to volunteer for his campaign. I replied “Well Governor Brown, I’m flattered, but I’ve already volunteered to work on Pat Buchanan’s campaign.” To which he replied “Well, if you can’t work for me, will you at least vote for me?”

    Has the Carnegie reopened yet? I stopped by there a couple of months ago with guests from out of town and it was still closed.

    • 0 avatar
      Big Al From 'Murica

      Pat Buchanan, Jerry Brown…meh, whats the difference?

      • 0 avatar
        Jeff Waingrow

        TTAC is becoming a place where stupid ideas go to live another day. Take David Holzman’s excellent point about taxing carbon. It’s no sooner mentioned than dismissed with a loopy comment that isn’t even up to the standards of a non sequitur. More invidious are the comments that parade a smattering of scientific jargon; you can be pretty sure they wouldn’t stand up to real scientific scrutiny. And whatever you may think of Jerry Brown, he’s certainly distinguishable from Pat Buchanan if there’s even one synapse in your head.

  • avatar
    VoGo

    I used to live in an America that knew if the oil companies were winning, that meant the rest of us were losing.

    What happened?

    • 0 avatar
      CJinSD

      This is why Andrew Cuomo can get away with saying he cares about working people while barring his state from fracking jobs that pay an average of $107K. Domestic production is the deciding factor in whether or not oil companies and the public can share prosperity.

      • 0 avatar
        VoGo

        Republicans are all in favor of states’ rights, except when states endanger the profitability of Big Oil.

        • 0 avatar
          ihatetrees

          Please…
          You’d have done better mentioning “The Children”.
          NAME a nationally prominent Republican who wants to change NY State’s policy. They don’t care if NY State pursues bat-sh!t crazy policies.

          NY is a Clown State – a lost cause – losing population and political influence. It’s an excellent example of progressive insanity – the attitude on the right is to pass the popcorn and watch the train-wreck.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Other states that do allow fracking will make up the slack and their workers will reap the benefit of higher incomes and richer lifestyles.

        They keep pumping oil in New Mexico and West Texas even though there is a glut of the stuff.

        Every producer is so afraid to lose that investment they made in pipes and rigs so they have to keep pumping and pray that the price of oil doesn’t fall below that magic break-even $35 bbl.

        They’re still making money at $47 bbl, just not as much as before. Gas is below $2/gal RegUnl in my town and we get our gas from the refinery in Artesia, NM. Prices are even lower in El Paso, TX.

  • avatar
    LS1Fan

    Couple o’ thoughts.

    Any money intended for “road construction” is in fact going to political cronies ,deficits and slushfunds. Put another way the same potholes that were there last year will be there next year -bill or no bill.

    Next, gas taxes. Let’s quit pretending we as a species are farsighted enough to give a rats about a climate problem our grandkids will suffer from. If global climate change is an ELE for humanity, then its curtains. As Riddick would say-“Had to End Sometime”. So no f–ks given by me.

    Further-who says higher global temps ARE a problem?

    Yeah yeah, higher temps and flodded cities and worse weather. So people move, build better buildings and board their cruise ships at a different dock. Humanity ticks on, or at least most of it. California will have long since cleaved into the ocean from all the financial debt stressing the Pacific Plate into fracture.

  • avatar
    tedward

    This boils down to, in my opinion, legislators forgetting to bridge the gap between practical realities and lofty goals. The right way to do this would be a positive cultivation of electronic vehicle industry within the state. Having tesla isn’t enough, they should be courting all stripes of battery and motor producers, concurrent with the current focus on attracting r&d centers. Foreign makes should be offered ridiculous incentives to open up shop, baic for instance just opened an r&d lab in silicon valley, California should be bent over courting actual manufacturing investment to follow. The state would gain the leverage and the knowledge needed to move the industry forward, regulatory control of the operations side to ensure a favorable set of industry rules, while also bringing private investment to bear on the local marketing push needed to sell these range challenged vehicles in any kind of meaningful numbers.

    I don’t think this will happen because it is messy. California has a great deal of influence as a large purchaser, but in order to make the kinds of industry shaking moves it wants to it needs to also be a major part of the industry, and that involves sharing in the environmental costs.

  • avatar
    ihatetrees

    If climate change is going to be catastrophic, CA’s contribution will be insignificant compared to that of China and the developing world. And CA’s political class can’t pressure either because China has nuclear missiles and developing nation criticism equals racism.

  • avatar
    redav

    I’m all for improving the environment, reducing emissions, and using less oil. I believe you have to set big goals that sometimes you won’t hit. But you have to be able to hit it, and there’s no way CA can cut their gas consumption in half by 2030. Even if every vehicle sold in the state from 2025 on was gasoline-free, they still wouldn’t hit that goal.

    • 0 avatar
      highdesertcat

      For those people who want to use less oil, or no oil at all, they always have the option to buy, or not to buy. The rest of us may want to use the plentiful supply of cheap oil to enhance our lives.

      Oil was good enough to build America. Oil is good enough now to enrich our lives.

      I think there is room for all sorts of energy, wind, solar, geothermal, wave, nuclear, coal, natgas, oil, etc. I vote to keep oil, diesel, gasoline and all its byproducts a viable option for people like me who want it.

  • avatar
    HotPotato

    I’ve been watching the TV show Veep. Last night I watched a relevant episode:

    Adviser: “We should do the cock-thumb.”

    Veep: “What’s a cock-thumb?”

    Adviser: “We propose a radical cut to the military, cutting off the cock; the Joint Chiefs in turn propose their own more reasonable cut, cutting off the thumb.”

    Veep: “You mean, ‘negotiating’?”

    Maybe 50% was the cock intended to secure a 15% thumb.

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