California and British Columbia Ally to Fight Global Warming; BC to Adopt California Low-Carbon Fuel Standard
California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between the state of California and the Canadian Province of British Columbia to fight global warming. The agreement outlines key actions that California and British Columbia will take to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.
The agreement also commits British Columbia to adopt California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). California’s LCFS will reduce the carbon content of all transportation fuels sold in the state by 10% by 2020. Yesterday, the Province of Ontario also agreed to develop an LCFS. (Earlier post.)
The Memorandum of Understanding on Pacific Coast Collaboration to Protect our Shared Climate and Ocean commits BC and California to work together to cap and significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and collaborate on the innovation and implementation of clean technologies. It also commits to join with other jurisdictions to build a hydrogen highway from British Columbia to Baja California.
Like California, British Columbia is committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions to below 1990 levels by 2020 and beyond. British Columbia is the first Canadian province to sign the Western Regional Climate Action Initiative with California, Arizona, New Mexico, Oregon, Washington and Utah. Members commit to reaching greenhouse gas targets, participating in a regional market-based program, like a cap-and-trade system for emissions, and participating in a multi-state registry.
Earlier this year, Premier Campbell announced an environmental agenda that, in addition to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, includes building a hydrogen highway; adopting California’s tailpipe emissions standards; and identifying how British Columbia’s government can become carbon neutral. Environmental sustainability is also a cornerstone of Vancouver’s 2010 Olympic Games.
California is currently party to eight climate change and energy agreements with other states, nations and Canadian provinces, including British Columbia, Ontario and Manitoba. These agreements, the Governor’s office states, are important because they expand markets for clean fuels, cars and emissions credits across borders, allowing emission reductions at the lowest possible cost. California is working with other governments so that reporting, measuring, verifying and emissions markets have consistent protocols.
Premier Gordon Campbell has reached out to build cross-border relationships, and he has emerged as an important leader in North America who promotes collaboration and cooperation on issues that affect us all. Climate change and ocean health are issues that do not respect borders, and we must foster collaboration among governments, businesses, and citizens to address these critical issues.—Gov. Schwarzenegger
This is an important step forward for our commitment to forge a Pacific Coast Collaborative, and I want to thank Governor Schwarzenegger for his tremendous leadership on tackling climate change. This agreement affirms the partnership between BC and California and sets out an action plan that can benefit our economies, our climate, our ocean and our planet.—Premier Campbell
The agreement also provides for action on Pacific Ocean conservation, including the sharing of information about coastal and ocean resources and health; collaborating on best practices for the development, monitoring and management of marine protection areas; synchronization of environmental protection at Pacific ports; and stronger relations between existing sea-floor observatories such as NEPTUNE, VENUS and MARS (Saanich Inlet, Juan de Fuca tectonic plate and Monterey Bay, respectively).
The signing of the MoU follows Premier Campbell’s 15 March 2007 meeting with Governor Schwarzenegger in Santa Monica, California; BC’s joining the Western Regional Climate Action Initiative, 24 April; and BC’s joining the North American Climate Registry.