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California Governor Looks To Extend Climate-Change Efforts

Rich Pedroncelli / AP / File

FILE - In this Jan. 7, 2016 file photo, Gov. Jerry Brown answers a question concerning his proposed 2016-17 state budget at a news conference, in Sacramento, Calif.

Rich Pedroncelli / AP / File

(AP) — California Gov. Jerry Brown has launched a campaign to extend some of the most ambitious climate-change programs in the country and ensure his environmental legacy when he leaves office in two years.

The centerpiece of the push is a cap-and-trade program that aims to reduce use of fossil fuels by forcing manufacturers and other companies to meet tougher emissions limits or pay up.

The program, however, is only authorized to operate until 2020. It faces a litany of challenges including a lawsuit questioning its legality, poor sales of credits, and lukewarm support among Democratic legislators to extend it.

Derek Walker of the Environmental Defense Fund says talks by Brown with the oil industry, environmental groups and organized labor show his all-out effort to continue his climate change agenda before leaving office.