Canada agreement

It’s too early to get too excited about the agreement signed (recently) between the country of Canada and the state of California on advancing cleaner vehicles and fuels because it lacks a lot of specifics. But at a time when automakers have expressed frustration with President Donald Trump’s efforts to essentially create two sets of auto-emission policies by weakening ones adopted by California and 13 other states, the deal sends the right message.

Not only will California not cave to the administration’s strong-arm tactics, it will seek out ever more allies to show the nation — and world — that its approach on reducing vehicle carbon emissions is better business than Trump’s planned rollback.

The states working with California to cut greenhouse gas emissions are Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont and Washington. Collectively, with California, these states make up more than 40% of the U.S. passenger vehicle market.

Canada’s auto emissions standards have emulated U.S. rules, but several analysts told The New York Times that Wednesday’s announcement signaled a potential switch to the tougher standards of California and the other states. More states should take a stand against the administration’s planned rollback this year, forcing automakers to follow a single, cleaner set of standards. That’s better for the long-term health of the industry and the planet.

The San Diego Union-Tribune

9/11 victim compensation

New York said farewell Wednesday to a hero as retired NYPD Detective Lou Alvarez was laid to rest — the latest victim of World Trade Center-related illnesses. To his final breath, Alvarez fought for making the federal 9/11 Victim Compensation Fund permanent and financially solvent to aid the expanding rolls of first responders and others who are suffering.

Although neither Mayor de Blasio nor Gov. Cuomo were at the funeral, they both have an official role regarding the cause of the WTC sickened. And it’s not the mayor giving Alvarez a posthumous Key to the City — recognizing not only his NYPD service, but his unending advocacy for his fellow heroes and victims. De Blasio must stand down in his opposition to granting unlimited sick time to all municipal workers who volunteered in the pile post-9/11. Cops and firefighters already have this benefit, but many others don’t.

Last year, with Albany poised to pass a sick time bill, de Blasio intervened to kill it — promising to grant the benefit through union bargaining. We were more than skeptical and as it turned out, correctly so. With onerous bureaucratic hoops to jump through, only a handful qualified.

Last month, in the closing order of business, the Legislature passed a bill extending 9/11-related unlimited sick time to NYPD and FDNY civilian workers, EMTs and paramedics.

Cuomo must sign it and extend assistance to the selfless people who, like Lou Alvarez, sacrificed their health to help at Ground Zero in the city’s and country’s days of dire need.

New York Daily News

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