Please verify

Watch LIVE

New eco-friendly trains should be exempt from environmental regs, says Calif. gov


"This is one of those 'pass the popcorn' kind of stories," writes blogger Doug Ross.  "A Governor who never met an environmental regulation he didn’t like can’t get his pet project built unless he’s able to disable regulatory traps he’s spent his life helping to set."

There really is something funny-yet-not-surprising-at-all about this story:

The Brown administration, laboring to start building California’s high-speed rail project by early next year, is preparing a proposal to insulate the project from environmental lawsuits, limiting circumstances in which a court may block construction of the line.

The proposal, criticized by environmentalists as it emerged on Friday, would protect the $68 billion project from court-ordered injunctions that might otherwise be issued under the California Environmental Quality Act.

Except in the most serious cases of potential environmental harm, the proposed legislation would allow construction to proceed while the California High-Speed Rail Authority fixes any environmental flaws identified by a judge.


The state has previously protected major projects from environmental challenges. Brown, a Democrat, signed legislation last year accelerating judicial review of environmental challenges to a proposed football stadium in Los Angeles.

At the time, he said the project was necessary to “get people working” in California.

Proponents of the high-speed rail project have made the same argument about high-speed rail.

The project is a major part of Brown’s agenda, and the proposal to protect it from litigation could be significant to his ability to start construction in the Central Valley by next year.

As governor, Jerry Brown is working to skirt environmental lawsuits, yet as attorney general, he spent his time filing environmental lawsuits.  The irony really is astounding.

Nevertheless, don't think environmental regulations could be waived to "get people working" in... say, the oil industry.  It's apparently only acceptable when it meets the government's needs, not the peoples'.

Most recent
All Articles