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    First State Cap-and-Trade Plan Released

    The new legislation is likely to include clean vehicle regulations, reports say.

    SACRAMENTO -- The California Air Resources Board (CARB) developed a version of cap-and-trade regulation last week that would establish a cap covering approximately 85 percent of the state's greenhouse gas emissions, Truckinginfo.com reported. If passed, it would be the first cap-and-trade program in the country, and would take effect Jan. 1, 2012.

    Under the proposal, the first compliance period would address electricity generation and large industrial sources, which would be required to cut emissions starting in 2012. Industrial fuel combustion, commercial and residential fuel combustion of natural gas and propane, and transportation fuels would have to comply starting in 2015, according to the report.

    According to California law, greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced to 1990 levels by 2020, the Web site reported.

    "As world leaders prepare for another conference at which no new international treaty will be signed, it is important that the public understand that progress in reducing emissions continues," Mary Nichols, CARB chairman, said in the report. "By releasing the first draft of a cap-and-trade system that California will put into effect in 2012, we are demonstrating the state's determination to push ahead, continue to work with other states in the U.S. and abroad, and invite others to join us."

    CARB is still undecided on whether or not to include home fuel and transportation in the first cap-and-trade compliance phase, but the legislation would likely include clean vehicle regulations, according to the report, which cited Reuters.

    "I look forward to a program in California that achieves our environmental goals and boosts our economy and I applaud the California Air Resources Board for laying the groundwork in developing a program with flexibility to achieve emission reductions at lower costs," Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger said in the report.

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