BAAQMD Releases Comprehensive Plan for Addressing Air Pollution and Climate Change
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (“BAAQMD”) has released a draft Clean Air Plan 2017. The Plan addresses air pollutants, public health and climate change. Of particular note, the Plan includes a 2050 target of an 80% reduction below 1990 levels for the Bay Area’s greenhouse gases (“GHG”) emissions. This is beyond the recently enacted State goal under SB 32 of a 40% reduction below 1990 levels by 2030. BAAQMD’s Plan is the first air district in California to develop a specific program to address GHG reductions through 2050.
The Plan sets forth a regulatory program to achieve its goals. It describes 85 new control measures to achieve GHG and other air pollutant reductions in all areas of the economy from major stationary sources and the transportation sector to land use planning and food consumption. For example, the Plan seeks to “decarbonize” the Bay Area’s electricity supply, further regulate and reduce particulate matter and other toxic air contaminants emissions, and reduce vehicle use and emissions from the transportation sector. The Plan sets forth the basis for the adoption of future regulations. BAAQMD plans a series of rulemaking procedures through 2020 to adopt these control measures. The Plan is important because BAAQMD is the trend-setter in California for the adoption of new air quality regulations and other regional air districts often use it as a model for development of their own plans and regulations.
BAAQMD is accepting comments on the draft Clean Air Plan through February 28, 2017. In addition, BAAQMD will hold eight public workshops on the Clean Air Plan at various locations between January 30 and February 8, 2017. BAAQMD will also release the draft Environmental Impact Report (“DEIR”) for the Clean Air Plan for a 45-day public comment period in the near future. Meyers Nave will continue to monitor BAAQMD’s actions and keep you apprised of developments.