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arbcombo -- Notice of Public Hearing and Availability of Three Documents for California Cap on GHG Emissions & Market-Based Compliance Mechanisms

Posted: 10 Oct 2011 15:38:20
The Air Resources Board (ARB or Board) will conduct a public
hearing on October 20, 2011, to consider approval of the proposed
California Cap on Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions and Market-Based
Compliance Mechanisms Program.  

ARB has posted on its website the following documents that will
be considered by the Board at a public hearing:  Response to
Comments on the Functional Equivalent Document (Response to FED
Comments), Proposed Adaptive Management Plan, and Final
Regulation Order and Compliance Offset Protocols Prepared for the
California Cap on GHG Emissions and Market-Based Compliance
Mechanisms Program.

The hearing notice is available at:

The October 20, 2011 public meeting agenda is available at:

The Response to FED Comments document presents ARB staff’s
written responses to comments on the Functional Equivalent
Document (FED) posted October 28, 2010 and included as Appendix O
to the Initial Statement of Reasons prepared for the California
Cap on GHG Emissions and Market-Based Compliance Mechanisms
(Cap-and-Trade) Regulation.  Staff prepared written responses to
comments that raise environmental issues and were received during
the initial 45-day comment period prior to the December 16, 2010
Board hearing, at the Board hearing, and during the comment
periods for the two 15-Day Change Notices posted July 25 and
September 12, 2011.  In accordance with ARB’s Certified
Regulatory Program under CEQA, the Board will consider for
approval the Response to FED Comments prior to the Board taking
final action on the proposed regulation.

The FED also included a commitment to an Adaptive Management Plan
for the cap-and-trade program.  Adaptive management is a process
of information gathering, review and analysis, and response that
promotes flexible agency decision-making.  It is particularly
appropriate where complex systems are involved, where the effects
of an agency’s decisions and actions play out over an extended
period of time, and where the agency must meet multiple
objectives – as in the case of the proposed regulation.  Adaptive
management is consistent with ARB’s long-standing approach to
program implementation which incorporates on-going evaluation of
how programs and regulations are implemented on the ground,
regular updates to the Board, and adjustments to program
implementation and regulatory requirements, as necessary.  The
Board will consider for approval the Proposed Adaptive Management
Plan prior to the Board taking final action on the proposed

At the December 2010 hearing, the Board directed ARB staff to
finalize a cap-and-trade regulation.  The cap-and-trade program
covers major sources of GHG emissions in the State such as
refineries, power plants, industrial facilities, and
transportation fuels.  The regulation includes an enforceable
emissions cap that will decline over time.  The State will
distribute allowances, which are tradable permits, equal to the
emissions allowed under the cap.  Sources under the cap will need
to surrender allowances and offsets equal to their emissions at
the end of each compliance period.  If adopted, the program will
become effective in 2012, with emissions compliance requirements
starting in 2013.  Two 15-day notices of regulatory changes were
issued during the cap-and-trade rulemaking.  The Final
Cap-and-Trade regulation order, now available for download,
incorporates these changes to the regulation considered by the
Board in December 2010.  The four final compliance offset
protocols identify the project types and quantification methods
to generate ARB offsets eligible for use under the cap-and-trade
regulation.  The protocols are part of the regulatory package and
are also available for download.  

ARB Response to Comments on the Cap-and-Trade Functional
Equivalent Document
Proposed Adaptive Management Plan for the Cap-and-Trade
Final Regulation Order
Final Compliance Offset Protocols:

•Livestock Projects
•Ozone Depleting Substances Projects
•Urban Forest Projects
•U.S. Forest Projects

In a separate document, ARB staff will also prepare written
responses to all public comments received, not just comments on
the FED that raised environmental issues.  The complete written
responses to all comments will be included in the Final Statement
of Reasons (FSOR) prepared for the cap-and-trade rulemaking. 
Upon its completion, the FSOR will be made available in
electronic form on the ARB rulemaking webpage at

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