European, U.S. Climate Policies Trail California’s

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 As California pushes forward on a wide range of aggressive goals to curb its contribution to climate change, the same solution that’s the centerpiece of the state’s effort — a cap-and-trade market for carbon emissions — is moving forward in a big way on the international stage.

The European Union voted Wednesday to strengthen the role of the continental cap-and-trade system. But, as the New York Times reported, the union is far from unified on the issue. Many fear cap-and-trade would burden the European economy — in part because the U.S. has failed to pass its own federal cap-and-trade scheme.

But while Congress failed to pass two such proposals in the last three years, California is already eight months into developing an online marketplace that promises to reduce carbon emissions by requiring polluters to purchase allowances for the carbon they emit. The idea is that the overall cap will fall every year.

As the Public Press reported in the cover story of its latest print edition, California’s cap-and-trade regulations have some serious holes that may hinder the state’s ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020.

- See more at: http://sfpublicpress.org/news/2013-07/european-us-climate-policies-trail-californias#sthash.a4OsotkZ.dpuf