Mary Nichols, Chair of the California Air Resources Board, stressed the importance of state action to address climate change during her keynote address at NASEO’s Annual Meeting. “We want to be on the right side of history. To be able to tell our grandchildren that we did something to help this crisis.”
California, a national leader and part of the U.S. Climate Alliance, abides by the Paris Agreement -- to try to keep global warming below 1.5 degrees Celsius from pre-industrial levels. “We don’t know how we are going to get to zero emissions by 2045, but we are moving forward with faith that we can,” Nichols says.
Nichols is proud of the progress California has made. California is making its grid more resilient and affordable. Moving forward, all new homes built will include solar panels, with incentives for adding solar to existing homes. Battery storage costs in California are half of what they were six years ago, and the state is looking into carbon capture and other methods to decrease emissions.
“We all have a collective problem about how to move forward under difficult circumstances,” Nichols says. “It’s never been more important that state’s use the power that they have to address climate issues with urgency.”