Michael Zischke was quoted in a Nov. 26, 2012 Daily Journal article about a recent trial court ruling that found that San Diego officials did not adequately weigh the impacts a large transportation plan would have on climate change. According to the article, the case against the San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG) is the first test of SB 375, a 2008 law that aimed to cut greenhouse gas emissions by requiring that planners promote the use of public transportation by designing walkable communities.
In the ruling, San Diego County Superior Court Judge Timothy B. Taylor wrote that SANDAG had ignored Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger executive order calling for the state to take steps to dramatically reduce greenhouse emissions. But, according to Zischke, local agencies are not required to abide by executive orders.
“If the decision holds, it is a particularly breathtaking example of courts expanding CEQA requirements and CEQA being used to impose additional legal requirements on public agencies, beyond what the legislature has specified,” Zischke wrote in an email to the paper.