California Green: Compliance with the Golden State's Environmental Regulations
What are the environmental regulations that businesses need to comply with in California?
Businesses operating in California are subject to numerous environmental regulations at the federal, state, and local levels. Some of the critical regulations applicable to businesses in California include:
Air Quality Regulations: The California Air Resources Board (CARB) is responsible for regulating air quality in California, and businesses are required to comply with various regulations, including those for greenhouse gas emissions, air toxics, and mobile sources.
Water Quality Regulations: The California State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB), regional water boards, and local agencies set and enforce water quality standards and regulations for the discharge of pollutants into surface water and groundwater.
Hazardous Waste Regulations: California has its own hazardous waste regulations, which are stricter than the federal hazardous waste regulations. Businesses must ensure compliance with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control's (DTSC) regulations governing the generation, storage, transportation, and disposal of hazardous waste.
Environmental Impact Regulations: The California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) requires businesses to assess potential environmental impacts before undertaking a project. CEQA review may occur at the state or local level, and businesses must comply with the requirements of the reviewing agency.
Endangered Species Protection Regulations: The California Endangered Species Act and the Federal Endangered Species Act protect endangered and threatened plant and animal species, and businesses must comply with both the federal Endangered Species Act and the California Endangered Species Act to protect endangered and threatened species and their habitats. For example, businesses involved in development or land use may need to obtain permits or consult with relevant agencies to avoid harming listed species or their habitats. In some cases, the development or land use project might need to be modified or mitigated to reduce the impact on these species. Compliance with these and other environmental regulations can be complex, and it is advisable for businesses in California to seek legal advice from experienced attorneys to ensure they understand and meet all applicable requirements and avoid costly penalties or legal action.