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Can California adapt to global warming?

In 2006, California adopted the nation's first comprehensive law to limit emissions of carbon dioxide and other gases that scientists have found to be heating the planet. Last year, state officials laid out a detailed plan of how they plan to slash the state's emissions to 1990 levels in the next 11 years. And they began to adopt regulations, such as the nation's first rule to mandate low-carbon fuel.

But California can't control whether Congress will adopt an effective national climate law and it has no control over whether U.S. action could spur China, India and other fast-growing nations to commit to reducing their carbon footprint at the December negotiations in Copenhagen to draft a climate treaty.

So the nation's most populous state has already begun preparing for the worst: heat-waves, a rising sea level, flooding, wildlife die offs and other expected consequences from what the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a group of the world's top scientists, predict will be a dramatic temperature increase by the end of this century.

Its called adaptation.

A new comprehensive plan from California's Natural Resources Agency offers strategies to deal with threats in seven sectors from fire-fighting to public health and water conservation. The public is invited to submit comments to the draft over the next 45 days (email address is  Public hearings will be held in Sacramento on August 13, and in Los Angeles on a later date.

The draft is "a good step in the right direction," said Gina Solomon of the Natural Resources Defense Council, an advocacy group. "It highlights the importance of local adaptation planning, protecting vulnerable communities and the importance of public education."

But she cautioned: "These are all just words on paper without funding to carry them out. The federal government should help states to prepare for climate change. Spending some money now will save billions later, and these strategies save lives."

David Festa of the Washington-based Environmental Defense Fund, voiced the hope that the report would "add urgency to our state's desperate water supply situation," noting that the Legislature will consider five new water-related bills when it reconvenes on August 17.

-- Margot Roosevelt

Comments () | Archives (2)

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For the life of me, I do not understand as to the reason that people complain in this state about a “water shortage”? Quite honestly, look around, as there should never be a water shortage, and really never is, as what we do have is a “water delivery shortage.” It is the delivery mechanism that is outdated and needs to be changed, as we have more water that we can ever use in this world today! Do you know that we only use less than 1% of the world’s fresh water by all of the world’s population? We use 400 Trillion, yes trillion gallons per day, but that is less than 1% of the available fresh water available in the world on a daily basis. Do you know that there is 3 X’s more fresh water in underground aquifers and rivers than there is on the surface? Do you know that water in this world cannot be created or destroyed?

We are not even speaking about desalinization plants that could eliminate the need for any cut backs to agriculture; business; human consumption, but for some reason we have seemed to lose our way in the entrepreneurial spirit in this state; this country; maybe even the world for that matter! It should never be stated as an issue of a “water shortage”, but a “water delivery shortage” which is the problem.

Granted, water is the resource of the world’s population, but the delivery mechanism is for those that want to provide viable natural resource for the masses, and all other demands and needs for water, and should be rewarded for their risk and use of their capital! These business men do not charge for water, and will not charge for water, but the charges will be for “delivery services” as you are paying for today when you pay your water bill. They are charging you for usage fees, and that is their cost for harnessing the water and bringing it forward for your own use!

Please, California, wake up and understand there is no such thing as a “water shortage” but a “water delivery shortage”. In closing, I will debate anyone further on the subject of a “water shortage.”

Rick Schotts

The next time you fill up with gasoline to get to school or work please keep in mind that the price you are paying is fifty cents higher than drivers in other states pay. At current prices that is twenty percent more for the "special summer blend" of fuel that the refiners in Califoria are required to produce to limit the emissions of smog producing gases.
In the years to come the California Air Resources Board is going to cut gasoline production by 25% and subsitute the biofuels that the planting, refining and distrubition of has not been perfected or planned for. (Ethanol cannot be delivered through petroleum pipelines, so it has to be delivered by...diesel trucks.)
So as the "gasoline shortage" develops and the lines at the few service stations that are left wind down the Miracle Mile, California drivers will be
wondering how this running on empty "crisis" came about.
Google: steve lee bad ideas


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