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AJR-35 Exportation: coal.(2011-2012)

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AJR35:v93#DOCUMENT

Assembly Joint Resolution No. 35
CHAPTER 139

Relative to exportation of coal.

[ Approved by Governor  September 18, 2012. Filed with Secretary of State  September 18, 2012. ]

LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AJR 35, Williams. Exportation: coal.
This measure urges the President of the United States and the 112th Congress to enact legislation to restrict the transshipment for waterborne export of coal for electricity generation to any nation that fails to adopt rules and regulations on the emissions of greenhouse gases or hazardous air emissions that are at least as restrictive as those adopted by the United States or, in the alternative, to secure and approve international agreements to ensure all nations adopt regulations and technology that result in emissions reductions equal to those in place in the United States. The measure would urge the Governor of California to inform the Governors of the States of Oregon and Washington of the significant health risks to the people of the Pacific Coast states if large coal export terminals and coal transport expansions are licensed and permitted to operate on or near the coast of the States of Oregon and Washington.
Fiscal Committee: YES  

WHEREAS, California law requires electricity providers to procure not less than 33 percent of retail sales of electricity from renewable energy resources by December 31, 2020; and
WHEREAS, California has emerged as a global leader in the transition from fossil fuel dependence to a clean energy economy; and
WHEREAS, California law limits long-term investments in baseload generation by utilities to powerplants that meet strict greenhouse gas emissions standards. According to the State Energy Resources Conservation and Development Commission, no existing coal plant has demonstrated that it currently complies with the greenhouse gas emissions limit on long-term investments in baseload generation; and
WHEREAS, The United States Environmental Protection Agency in December 2011 issued regulations requiring coal-fired powerplants to significantly reduce emissions of mercury, arsenic, and other toxic pollutants within four years; and
WHEREAS, Hazardous emissions from coal powerplants threaten health locally and at great distances; and
WHEREAS, Coal exports from United States ports to Asia have risen by almost 240 percent from 3.8 million tons in 2009 to over 13 million tons in 2010; and
WHEREAS, The environmental consequences of massive coal exports to Asia are severe, including the burning of millions of tons of coal that releases hazardous air emissions into the atmosphere and increased mountaintop removal projects; and
WHEREAS, Burning coal for electricity generation worldwide is the main cause of greenhouse gas emissions and the planetary climate crisis; and
WHEREAS, Coal burning has contributed to significant human health risks in all age groups through the emissions of ozone, sulfur dioxide (SO2), particulate matter, nitrogen oxides (NOx), mercury, and carbon dioxide (CO2); now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly and the Senate of the State of California, jointly, That the Legislature urges the President of the United States and the 112th Congress to enact legislation to restrict the transshipment for waterborne export of coal for electricity generation to any nation that fails to adopt rules and regulations on the emissions of greenhouse gases or hazardous air emissions that are at least as restrictive as those adopted by the United States or, in the alternative, to secure and approve international agreements to ensure all nations adopt regulations and technology that result in emissions reductions equal to those in place in the United States; and be it further
Resolved, That the Legislature urges the Governor of California to inform the Governors of the States of Oregon and Washington of the significant health risks to the people of the Pacific Coast states if large coal export terminals and coal transport expansions are licensed and permitted to operate on or near the coast of the States of Oregon and Washington; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the President and Vice President of the United States, the President pro Tempore of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, to each Senator and Representative from California in the Congress of the United States, and to the author for appropriate distribution.