Capitol Alert

AM Alert: California Air Resources Board targets short-lived pollution

Oil and gas aren’t the only things driving climate change, and today the state will call out other culprits.

Gov. Jerry Brown and Democratic leaders failed to secure a mandate to slice petroleum use in half, but the Air Resources Board – vilified by opponents of Senate Bill 350 as an unaccountable bureaucracy, while backed by Brown as his fallback route for change – will take a look today at the less discussed issue of short-term pollutants, which dissipate more quickly than carbon dioxide but are far more powerful.

The category includes pollutants like fluorinated gases that can leak from fridges and air conditioners, black carbon that billows from forest fires and some older diesel engines and methane generated by garbage piles (hence the state’s push to get all food waste out of landfills). Last year’s Senate Bill 605 directed the ARB to tackle short-lived pollutants, and the agency will discuss its strategy during a workshop today at the Cal/EPA headquarters on I street.

SHE-SEARCH: Members of the California Legislative Women’s Caucus will gather in Lakeside today for a retreat in which they’ll formulate goals for next year. They posted a mixed record on their priorities for 2015, with Gov. Jerry Brown signing equal pay legislation hailed as the strongest in the country but vetoing measures seeking to expand family leave and bolster early childhood education.

MONUMENTAL: California’s desert wonders will get more official recognition if Sen. Dianne Feinstein has her way: she’ll be in Whitewater today continuing her quest to have President Obama make Mojave Trails, Sand to Snow and Castle Mountains national monuments, a designation that creates protections for “objects of historic or scientific interest.” She’s turning to the executive branch after her bills on the issue failed to advance.

COMMUNICATION: For all you dreaming of a career in government PR, or already engaged in one, today you get a chance to learn from the pros. A State Information Officers Council training session at the CalPERS building on Q street will offer a rundown of some tips for managing the flow of information, including that pesky new social media thing.

Jeremy B. White: 916-326-5543, @CapitolAlert