Near Zero’s Danny Cullenward spoke with The Canadian Press about California’s new bill to overhaul the state’s cap-and-trade system, which is currently linked with the same kind of system in the Canadian province of Quebec.

Quebec currently holds joint auctions with California every quarter and the province has delegated the administration of them to California’s regulator.

“It’s an identical system right now,” said Danny Cullenward, an energy economist and lawyer who advised the California Senate on the bill.

He said Quebec and Ontario will still be allowed to link to California’s new plan, but the provinces will have to match the minimum carbon credit price floor.

“If somebody wants to link to this new market they have to have a comparable minimum carbon price,” he said in an interview. “It would be a terrible idea if we set up an ambitious climate plan and we linked to a partner that was not all that ambitious.”

Representatives from the Quebec and Ontario governments were not immediately available for comment Wednesday.

If passed by California legislators, the new system would begin in January 2021, but there is no guarantee it will be adopted, said Cullenward.

“It’s too soon to tell, and [passing the bill] will be a significant lift, but there are positive signs,” he said.

Read the full article, “California tables new cap-and-trade plan that challenges Ontario, Quebec,” which was published by The Globe and Mail.