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SoCalGas Sues California Over Hotcoldwetdry Rules

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I still say it would be better if the fossil fuels companies refused to sell their product to the governments that give them issues, but, hey, this is a start

California sued over climate change policy — by the nation’s biggest gas utility

Southern California Gas Co. is taking its battle with state officials over climate change policy to court, arguing in a new lawsuit that the California Energy Commission has failed to promote natural gas as required by state law.

The lawsuit, filed Friday in Orange County Superior Court, is the latest attempt by SoCalGas to shield itself against efforts to phase out gas, a planet-warming fossil fuel used for heating, cooking and power generation. The company, which maintains its headquarters in Los Angeles and is owned by Sempra Energy of San Diego, took in $4.5 billion in operating revenue last year.

A separate lawsuit was filed last week against the state’s Air Resources Board by the California Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition, whose two “charter members” are SoCalGas and Clean Energy Fuels Corp., which joined the gas company in its lawsuit against the Energy Commission. This lawsuit seeks to overturn the newly approved “advanced clean trucks” rule, which is aimed at putting 300,000 zero-emission trucks on the road by 2035.

The legal actions are part of a growing effort by leading players in the natural gas industry to defend themselves as public support increases for aggressive policies to wind down the burning of fossil fuels, not just in California but across the country. (snip)

The lawsuit claims state officials are flouting a law requiring them to consider the role gas might play in reducing emissions.

In 2013, lawmakers overwhelmingly approved Assembly Bill 1257, known as the Natural Gas Act. The bill, which was signed into law by then-Gov. Jerry Brown, required the Energy Commission to “identify strategies to maximize the benefits obtained from natural gas as an energy source” every four years.

This lawsuit has a lot better chance than the ones against the fossil fueled companies filed by states and municipalities. They also serve almost 22 million Californians in southern CA.

Also joining the lawsuit were three chapters of the Utility Workers Union of America, collectively representing over 4,000 SoCalGas employees.

“Is the position we take in this lawsuit a defense of the jobs, of the work our members, and allied union workers in the pipe trades, building and construction trades, manufacturing and services do every day? You bet,” the presidents of UWUA Locals 132, 483 and 522 said in a written statement.

This should be a fun one to watch.


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