California lawmakers voted Monday evening to extend the state’s premiere program on climate change, a victory for Gov. Jerry Brown that included unprecedented Republican support for fighting global warming.
In a break with party leaders and activists in California and Washington, eight Republicans joined with Democrats to continue the cap-and-trade program, which requires companies to buy permits to release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
The legislation would keep the 5-year-old program operating until 2030, providing a key tool for meeting the state’s ambitious goal for slashing emissions. Cap and trade also generates important revenue for building the bullet train from Los Angeles to San Francisco, another priority for the governor.
California’s program is the only one of its kind in the U.S. and has been considered an international model for using financial pressure to prod industry to reduce emissions. Bipartisan support for the system comes as Republicans in Washington, including President Trump, have blocked, resisted or undermined national efforts to fight global warming.