Water agencies across the state rely on dirty energy to deliver their services to residents. Whether it’s the pumps to help move water or the electricity used to help clean water, the costs for carbon offsets will likely put a strain on budgets. This means that fees and rates will likely increase. But even marginal increases at a consumer level means tremendous increases at the agency level.
Take for instance the Municipal Water District of Southern California. They have estimated that their average consumer will see their bill increase by $2.50 per year. But when that cost is combined from millions of users, it could cause enormous pressure on the agency’s budget.
Air and water don’t mix – usually.
But as California’s air-quality enforcers are poised to adopt a highly complex plan in Sacramento to ratchet down on climate-changing greenhouse gas emissions over time, the impact of the new policy is likely to be felt at regional and local water districts throughout the state.
At issue is cap-and-trade, a system by which a key requirement of California’s landmark anti-carbon emissions law, AB 32, is put into effect. Cap-and-trade forces companies to steadily cut their greenhouse gases, while allowing the use of credits to ease their burden until their emissions-limiting equipment is fully up and running. The overall goal is to cut greenhouse gases in California to their 1990 levels in nine years.
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