Insane AGW regulations hamstringing California

“California’s battle against greenhouse gases is likely to come to the Bay Area soon — with rules designed to reduce the carbon footprint of new housing and commercial development. …

But some environmentalists and city planners fear that the new set of guidelines being considered by the region’s air quality regulators could have an unintended [!] consequence, making it more difficult and more expensive for developers to construct buildings within already urbanized areas. …

Greg Tholen, a principal environmental planner for the [Bay Area Air Quality Management District], said his agency was only trying to be helpful. With everyone from the state attorney general to environmental watchdog groups suing local governments to force them to account for greenhouse gases from new development, Mr. Tholen said, the board’s members thought new guidelines would help the locals deal with the issue in a consistent way. …

After performing a set of intricate calculations, the board’s staff determined how much greenhouse gas the Bay Area was likely to produce by 2020, and by how much that projected amount would need to shrink to comply with new state guidelines. Then the board estimated what part of that reduction would be accomplished through the state’s broader effort to regulate carbon emissions. The amount left over was deemed to be the obligation of new development, and, in essence, each potential project was given an allowance of greenhouse gas emissions.

If a new project appears to exceed its allowance, it would trigger an environmental impact report to look for ways to reduce it. Guidelines suggest that a typical condominium development with more than 77 units would go over the threshold, as would a single-family housing project with 56 homes.

And that caused an uproar throughout the region. …

Berkeley is opposing the new guidelines, as is San Francisco, Oakland, Emeryville and several other cities. The pushback has forced the air board’s staff to retool and try to clarify its recommendation.” “Air Quality Guidelines Face Unexpected Critics

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