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    UK PM Blair & CA Gov. Schwarzenegger Choose PoLB As Site For Signing Agreement To Reduce Greenhouse Gases Linked To Global Warming

    (July 31, 2006) -- CA Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and British Prime Minister Tony Blair chose the Port of Long Beach as the venue to sign an agreement today (July 31) pledging to work to reduce greenhouse gases implicated in global warming.

    Photo: Office of CA Governor

    Photo: Office of CA Governor
    Sounding an environmental theme with a November 2006 election approaching that will determine his political future, Governor Schwarzenegger's office had a release and photos of the event on its website within hours.

    In addition to information and photos below, has coverage via Reuters at: Britain, Calif. To Work Together on Global Warming

    [begin release]

    Recognizing the immediate need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and mitigate the adverse consequences of climate change, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and British Prime Minister Tony Blair signed a groundbreaking agreement today to become partners and act aggressively to address climate change and promote energy diversity.

    “California will not wait for our federal government to take strong action on global warming,” said Gov. Schwarzenegger after an hour-long roundtable focused on clean energy and climate issues with the Prime Minister and more than a dozen CEOs. “Today, we are taking an unprecedented step by signing an agreement between California and the United Kingdom. International partnerships are needed in the fight against global warming and California has a responsibility and a profound role to play to protect not only our environment, but to be a world leader on this issue as well.”

    Specifically, the agreement commits both California and the United Kingdom to:
    • Evaluate and implement market-based mechanisms that spur innovation.
      • The United Kingdom will share best practices on emissions trading and lessons learned in Europe. California and the United Kingdom will also explore the potential for linkages between our market-based mechanisms that will better enable the carbon market(s) to accelerate the transition to a low carbon economy.
    • Deepen our understanding of the economics of climate change.
      • Both California and the United Kingdom have efforts underway to quantify the economic impacts of climate change, mitigation efforts and adaptation strategies. We will share results from these on-going and emerging studies. In particular, we must understand how best to model the impact of climate change emissions reduction policies and adaptation measures on regional and national economies.
    • Collaborate on technology research.
      • We will coordinate our energy sector efforts to switch to clean energy technologies, promote green buildings and increase the use of efficiency and renewable energy technologies. We will share information regarding our efforts to reduce emissions from the transportation sector, including California’s emission standards and hydrogen highway and the United Kingdom’s experience with a renewable fuels standard and clean coal technologies.
    • Enhance linkages between our scientific communities.
      • Enhanced coordination will help us understand the impacts of climate change at a regional level, potential mitigation strategies and adaptation measures, as well as acceptable levels at which to stabilize emissions. There are a number of efforts to build on, most notably at the United Kingdom’s Hadley Centre and the Virtual Climate Center in California.

    Because of California’s massive and growing economy, the state is the 12th largest emitter of carbon in the world despite leading the nation in energy efficiency standards and lead role in protecting its environment.

    During the roundtable with more than a dozen CEOs who represent 700,000 employees and 250 million customers, the Governor stressed the importance of protecting our economy while protecting the environment.

    “People always say you can't be pro-business and pro-environment, but they are dead wrong,” said Gov. Schwarzenegger. “You can do both and we’re proving it everyday in California. We are attacking global warming and still creating thousands of new jobs. We are leaders in energy efficiency and leaders in attracting new investment.”

    Today’s roundtable was hosted by the Climate Group, a nonprofit organization based in London, with an office in San Francisco, that mobilizes corporate and government leaders to build awareness about climate change to promote the acceleration of greenhouse gas emissions reductions.

    In a separate release, the Port of LB noted that BP's [British Petroleum] terminal at Pier T is PoLB's first to use shore-side electric power ("cold ironing") for ships at berth (avoids running the ships' diesel auxiliary engines). [The project is scheduled for completion in 2007].

    Photo: Office of CA Governor

    PoLB's release also noted that BP also participates in the Port's "Green Flag" program, which offers economic incentives to vessel operators who reduce ship speeds (and thus reduce polluting air emissions) within 20 miles of the harbor. BP has also installed electric shore-side booster pumps at the Pier T terminal, reducing emissions, and the company’s Alaska class vessels voluntarily use low-sulfur fuel here, PoLB said.

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