As the dust settles on the final hours of COP 21—the United Nations’ attempt to stave off the worst impacts of global warming by getting countries to agree to limit global warming pollution—there is a lot to learn and a roadmap of next steps that need to happen.
The bottom line is, California is a great place to look for many of the answers the UN is struggling with as an agreement is negotiated. Governor Brown, Air Resources Board Chair Nichols, Senate Pro-Tem De León, Speaker Atkins and Speaker-elect Rendon, Senator Lara and more, all have experience tackling these hard issues and can offer strong leadership.
Why do we need federal protection under the Clean Water Act if there are also state laws designed to protect our rivers and streams? The answer is that, all too often, state officials fail to enforce their own laws or side with politically-powerful polluters.