Gov. Jerry Brown warned of a California ravaged by forest fires, disease and mass migration if lawmakers fail to renew the state's signature program to fight climate change.
The urgency of Brown's pitch comes as he scrambles to line up support to renew California's cap and trade program in the face of opposition from conservatives who warn about costs and liberals who say it doesn't do enough to protect the environment.
Despite the opposition, Democrats on a key Senate committee passed a package of bills Thursday, one to renew cap and trade and another aimed at improving local air quality. Both are facing a critical hurdle next week: Votes on the floor of the Assembly and Senate. The cap-and-trade plan needs two-thirds to support to pass, and almost every Republican is opposed to it.