Sometimes living in the Bay Area is a great source of green pride. San Francisco has some of the most progressive environmental regulations in the country, and now the city is getting ready to tackle climate change. The Bay Area's air quality agency will vote in April on standards that would cut in half the emissions of global warming causing gases and other pollutants attached with new development.It will work like this: land development and construction projects will have to meet strict standards for air pollutants such as nitrous oxide and particulate matter, toxic air contaminants and greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide.
No stationary source could emit more than 10,000 metric tons per year of GHGs, and 1,100 tons of CO2 equivalent for non-stationary sources, like housing.
David Vintze, BAAQMD air quality planning manager, said the standards were a good step toward reaching climate stabilization goals set out by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. "We're headed in the right direction, but by no means is this alone going to be what we need to do," he said. "It's a long way from where we have to be to meet the 2050 goals of reducing emissions to 80 percent of 1990 levels. We still need to cut what we're proposing now in half to meet the 2050 goal."
"It's an ambitious standard, but it's totally, 100 percent consistent with where we have to be according to the state's Global Warming Solutions Act by 2020."
Vintze is referring to California's ambitious global warming plan, which seeks to reduce carbon emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2020 and cut them 80 percent by 2050.