A cyclist rides past a parked car and its exhaust pipes in Berlin, Germany.
A cyclist rides past a parked car and its exhaust pipes in Berlin, Germany. - 


MARK AUSTIN THOMAS: A showdown over global warming is set to take place in California today. The EPA will hold a public hearing in Sacramento on the state's plan to impose tougher vehicle emissions standards than the feds. Sarah Gardner reports from the Marketplace Sustainability Desk.

SARAH GARDNER: California asked the EPA for a waiver over a year and a half ago.

It wants to adopt its own tailpipe emissions standards, part of an aggressive statewide program to cut greenhouse gases.

Eileen Tutt is California's assistant secretary for climate change activities. She says the state has met EPA's criteria for a waiver.

EILEEN TUTT: We clearly are not acting capriciously, which is one of the criteria. The technologies that would be required to meet our regulations are literally off the shelf, they're on vehicles today, so it's clearly technically feasible.

California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has accused the EPA of stalling on the state's request but the EPA denies that.

Eleven other states want to adopt similar emissions rules, but they can't act until California's waiver request is decided. California has threatened to sue the EPA if the agency doesn't act by late October.

I'm Sarah Gardner for Marketplace.

Follow Sarah Gardner at @RadioGardner