Gov. Schwarzenegger Issues Statement on California’s Nation-Leading Environmental Standards

SACRAMENTO /California Newswire/ — Governor Schwarzenegger issued the following statement today after the President announced the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) will adopt a vehicle emissions standard modeled after California’s first-in-the-nation standard and the International Code Council announced the state’s newly adopted Green Building Standards Code will serve as a foundation for commercial buildings worldwide.

“California continues to lead the nation and the world in protecting the environment and fighting climate change,” said Governor Schwarzenegger. “I am proud that our efforts to reduce energy consumption and carbon output serve as an example for the rest of the nation and the world, and I applaud the federal government and the International Code Council for recognizing that we must take action now to fight global warming. Today’s announcements mean we will not only see dramatic reductions in our greenhouse gas emissions from our cars, trucks and buildings; we will also see savings passed on to consumers at the pump and in their energy bills. I look forward to continue working with our partners at all levels of government and in the private sector to find additional solutions – like California’s first-in-the-nation tailpipe emissions standard and green building code – that protect our environment and grow our economy at the same time.”

Since taking office, the Governor has aggressively pursued the enforcement of California’s 2002 law, AB 1493 by Assemblymember Fran Pavley, which allows California to enact and enforce emissions standards to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles. The state filed a lawsuit against the U.S. EPA in 2008 to overturn its decision denying California’s waiver request to enforce the state’s tailpipe emission standards after the California Air Resources Board requested the waiver in 2005. The U.S. EPA granted California’s waiver in June 2009.

In 2008, the Governor announced the adoption of the country’s first statewide Green Building Standards Code by the California Building Standards Commission. The adopted 2008 code went into effect on August 1, 2009. It is currently a voluntary standard and will become mandatory in the 2010 code. The International Code Council announced today it is developing a new code for commercial buildings entitled the International Green Construction Code, and will use the current California Green Building Standards Code as a key reference document.

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