Gov. Jerry Brown Signs New Climate Change Law, Commits to Drastic Gas Emission Reductions

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Gov. Jerry Brown is shown in a photo tweeted by the California Channel on Aug. 24, 2016, when he pledged to sign historic climate change legislation.

Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders embarked on a new era in California’s effort to combat climate change Thursday when the governor signed a law committing the state to some of the most drastic greenhouse gas emission reductions in the world.

“What we’re doing here is far-sighted, as well as far-reaching,” Brown said at a signing ceremony at Vista Hermosa Natural Park in downtown Los Angeles. “California is doing something that no other state has done.”

The legislation, passed after a difficult political battle in the Capitol, cements the legal framework for California’s climate policies for years to come. While previous law required the state to reduce emissions by 2020, the new measure, SB 32, sets a new, more aggressive target for 2030.

Under the law, the state must reduce its greenhouse gas emissions to 40% below 1990 levels, a goal that will likely involve significantly more electric cars, additional renewable energy and drastic cuts in emissions from dairy farms and other key industries.

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