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San Diego Emits More CO2 Per Person Than Other Regions.

Global warming is already affecting San Diego’s regional planning. California’s Air Resources Board will set new carbon emission reduction goals this fall.

San Diego’s Association of Governments, or SANDAG - made up of the mayors of all 18 cities and the county - met today to discuss how new greenhouse gas reduction goals will affect their growth.

Gary Gallegos, executive director of SANDAG, says studies show San Diego generates more greenhouse gas per person than other California regions.

“The baseline number that we’ve come up with,” Gallegos said, “is that every person in San Diego is emitting 26 pounds of CO2 of greenhouse gasses per day. We start from a higher base than other parts of the state, but the law is that we have to reduce it from that baseline on a per capita basis.”

Gallegos says transportation and energy make up more than half of carbon emissions. He says that means changing the way people move around the region is key to meeting the new targets.

“This is definitely putting climate change front and center in terms of the regional transportation plan,” he said.

San Diego will be the first California region to update its regional transportation plan under the new goals, which call for more “sustainable communities.”

City leaders worry that the “sustainable communities” policy in Senate Bill 375 may mean they lose control of higher density development.

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