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California; Regulatory Killer of Business or Environmental Leader

Written by Peter Friberg.

Supply Chain Brain posted an interesting article about California and its efforts to move towards cleaner air while at the same time ensuring business (freight/transportation) efficiencies.

It’s easy to pick on California. We are far and away the most regulated state in the union. And sometimes those regulations become burdensome and obnoxious. However, it would be unfair and disingenuous not to admit that if it weren’t for California’s environmental regulations this state might be so polluted as to be unlivable. In the 1970’s, when environmental regulations were just beginning, Los Angeles was becoming increasing smoggy to the extent that even airborne, one could not see across the city. And while smog has not been completely eliminated beautiful clear days are now commonplace.

LosAngelesSmog1970s

At what cost? There are a lot of good ideas out there: federal money for cancer research, socialized health care, tax-subsidized college education, etc. But
how much do these ideas cost; in tax dollars and/or in lost tax revenue? So what can the governing agencies in California do to improve air quality without raising costs – or without raising costs too much – and thereby driving business out of the state? That is the billion dollar question.

The other interesting part about California and its clean-air regulatory aims, is that a lot of California’s environmental regulations eventually become federal regulations.

As a Californian, I’ll be watching closely. No matter where you live, you should too.

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