SACRAMENTO – Assemblywoman Susan Bonilla’s bill, AB 577, which will allocate a portion of cap and trade proceeds to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions through the production of biogas, was approved this afternoon by the Assembly Natural Resources Committee.
“Biogas, which is gas that can be generated from landfills, food processing, livestock and agricultural waste, is an abundant, renewable source of energy here in California,” said Assemblywoman Susan A. Bonilla (D-Concord). “It makes no sense that we are not utilizing this sustainable and cleaner alternative to natural gas, which would reduce GHG emissions and create new jobs.”
Beginning this year, producers and suppliers of natural gas and transportation fuels must limit their GHG emissions or purchase carbon credits or offsets through the state’s cap and trade program. AB 577 will take advantage of this new revenue by reinvesting it back into the gas sector. Allocating cap and trade funds will allow local businesses to build the infrastructure necessary to collect and purify biogas and reduce our reliance on importing natural gas. AB 577 not only protects the environment, but it protects the state from importing natural gas and market price fluctuations.
“AB 577 will help turn organic waste into energy, cutting air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, while producing jobs and economic development in every region of the state,” said Julia Levin, Executive Director, Bioenergy Association of California. “It’s a great investment for California.”
“As a state, it is critical that we think of innovative, efficient, and long-term solutions to global warming and not just the next carbon emissions limit,” continued Bonilla. “This measure allocates much needed funding to produce safe, cost-effective, reliable, and sustainable energy that cuts harmful pollution.”
“I must thank Assemblywoman Bonilla for her leadership on this issue,” said Ryan Kenny, Senior Public Policy and Regulatory Affairs Advisor, Clean Energy. “Biomethane from organic waste is the lowest carbon transportation fuel of any kind, 90 percent cleaner than gasoline and diesel, and should be supported as a viable option for California’s clean air future.”
AB 577 will be heard next in Assembly Appropriations Committee.
Assemblywoman Susan A. Bonilla (D-Concord) was elected in November 2010 and represents California’s 14th Assembly District, which includes Contra Costa County and Solano County.