Home>Articles>Gov. Newsom Signs Extreme Heat Warning and Ranking System Bill into Law

California Governor Gavin Newsom speaking at the State of the State address in Sacramento, CA, Mar 8, 2022. (Photo: Sheila Fitzgerald/Shutterstock)

Gov. Newsom Signs Extreme Heat Warning and Ranking System Bill into Law

‘It isn’t really isn’t about climate change – it’s just simply about hotter temperatures and putting out a system to help warn people’

By Evan Symon, September 10, 2022 2:30 am

Governor Gavin Newsom signed a bill into law on Friday that will create an extreme heat warning and ranking system in California.

Assembly Bill 2238, jointly authored by Assemblywoman Luz Rivas (D-North Hollywood) and Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia (D-Coachella), will create a ranking and advance warning system in conjunction wit the Department of Insurance and the Integrated Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Program (ICARP), a wing of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) that focuses on climate change impacts. Such a system will be developed by January 2024 and will also require ICARP to develop a public program around the ranking system and work with local and tribal governments in implementing the system locally, develop guidance in preparing and planning for extreme heat, and recommend adaptation measures.

According to AB 2238, heat wave ranking itself will be based on the projected health impact of the wave, meteorological and weather data, and how long the wave is expected to last. Once fully up, heat wave rankings are planned to be as ubiquitous as current air quality alerts and forest/wildfire danger levels.

Written by Rivas and Garcia to help counter the greater frequency of heat waves and higher temperatures happening across California in recent years, AB 2238 was initially slow moving through both houses despite widespread support from both Democrats and Republicans. In May, it was even moved to the suspense file in part due to the slow progress.

However, a hotter than expected year quickly brought the bill back in the summer. In August, with hot temperatures statewide and a heat wave striking the state, the bill passed the final hurdles, including both a 40-0 Senate vote and a 79-0 Assembly vote on August 31st. With the need for a heart warning and ranking system more apparent, and still in the midst of the heatwave, Newsom then signed the bill into law on Friday.

AB 2238 signed into law

“This week’s unprecedented heat wave is a painful reminder of the costs and impacts of climate change – and it won’t be the last,” said Governor Newsom after signing AB 2238 and several other high heat related bills on Friday. “California is taking aggressive action to combat the climate crisis and build resilience in our most vulnerable communities, including a comprehensive strategy to protect Californians from extreme heat. With lives and livelihoods on the line, we cannot afford to delay.”

While numerous heat related bills were signed, many officials and lawmakers specifically pointed out AB 2238 as the main piece of legislation signed on Friday due to the ranking system having proved to have been needed during the summer.

Assemblywoman Luz Rivas. (Photo: Kevin Sanders for California Globe)

“California has been battling record breaking extreme heat all week. Unfortunately, each summer we are experiencing extreme heat weather events that are hotter and more devastating than the last,” noted Assemblywoman Rivas. “Thank you to Governor Newsom for signing my legislation, AB 2238, that will help save the lives of Californians, and my thanks to Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara for his leadership and dedication in pushing this legislation forward. California will now lead the nation with the first advance warning and ranking system for extreme heat waves.”

Insurance Commissioner Ricardo Lara added, “California is once again leading the world in fighting climate change and its deadly effects. Ranking heat waves will be a powerful new tool to protect all Californians alongside Governor Gavin Newsom’s Extreme Heat Action Plan. I applaud the Governor’s and the bill’s joint authors’ continued leadership on these necessary extreme heat investments and policies that will save lives and close the protection gap for our most at-risk communities as we face more heat waves in the years ahead.”

Many weather experts also noted the need for such a system in California.

“If you look past all the patting of themselves on the back and thanking each other and praising each other, what was signed today is important,” explained Helen Vega, a meteorologist and climate consultant in Southern California, to the Globe on Friday. “Even people who initially said that this was a waste of money finally saw the economic benefits of it, especially stores and locations with a lot of AC units that need to plan around heat waves and higher temperatures. By having the system in place, they can save a lot of money each year by putting ACs at the right level rather than putting it on full blast

“And it really isn’t about climate change. It’s just simply about hotter temperatures and putting out a system to help warn people. There’s a reason why every lawmaker voted for this.”

Governor Newsom is expected to sign more bills into laws in the coming weeks.

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29 thoughts on “Gov. Newsom Signs Extreme Heat Warning and Ranking System Bill into Law

    1. If it is I’m not laughing. They don’t seem t have anything constructive to do other than screw things up.

      1. No kidding, John, not laughing here either. This is preposterous but it appears to be part of the lefties ‘environmental justice’ nonsense —- a cover for commie wealth redistribution. Adding insult to injury, doing it in the name of such ridiculous stuff is like giving us the finger. I can’t think why this fell off my radar when it appeared early last year. Maybe because we’ve been constantly bombarded by this garbage? Sigh. Now our only option is to make thieving idiocy like this —- as well as the gov for signing it —- as famous as possible in the rest of the country. Most people are not buying this AT ALL. Newsom should be (metaphorically) tarred and feathered for okaying it.

  1. Just maybe they think we are all as dumb as they are that we needed a color coded chart to tell us it is hot outside! For hundreds of years we have used thermometers but a color coded chart is a game changer????
    Dear Lord, I pray you can guide these politicians to lead with common sense and shift priorities to bring law and order to this state.

    1. Cali Girl: The bill was unanimously approved by the legislature! Even the Repubs can’t figure out what’s going on here? Not good. Sometimes all you need to know that something is very fishy is to see the word “resilience,” a red flag. Sorta like seeing the word “Latinx.”

  2. Psy-op reminiscent of ‘Patriot Act’ and ‘Covid system’… Show and Tell called it!
    The plan is what XCel energy did in Colorado, locking people out of the ability to adjust thermostats in their homes. All while giving you the privilege of paying more for utilities.
    “CA Energy Commission Member (Siva Gunda): Need Programs to Shut Off Appliances, Turn Down A/C”

    1. There is nothing wrong with your A/C, Appliances, Heater, TV, etc. Any attempt to adjust would be futile. CA Gov’t is controlling them. If we wish to make it hotter or colder, we will adjust the thermostat. If we wish to turn off your TV/Appliances, we will turn it off. We will control the electricity. We will control the usage. We can turn on or off, we can make it so appliances cannot run until we say so. We can change the lighting, or change your channels to what we want you to watch. We control the electricity, so please change those gas systems over to our control. If your social score is not what we deemed appropriate will limit your electricity usage.

      That is California’s future.

      1. Exactly. This Commucrat government want you dependent on one energy source, so they can monitor everything you do, and control you through energy restrictions. No more gas lines to the house. No more gasoline powered cars. It’s pretty obvious what’s going on.

      2. Exactly, Orwellianism. The PG&E smart meters installed on your gas line and electrical panel can be integrated with “smart” appliances. You are fortunate if you own an older home where the air conditioning/heating and thermostat are on a separate circuit. I will opt for “dumb” appliances.

    2. Marilyn and Orwellianism: How much of being banged over the head with these people’s duplicity will get through to us? All we need to know to know this is bogus is that they didn’t pass legislation for five new nuclear plants (and etc.) This quote from the Gov’s statement upon signing was laughable:
      “‘….With lives and livelihoods on the line, we cannot afford to delay.'”
      Since when does Newsom care about lives and livelihoods? We know he doesn’t, and it’s not hyperbole to say so. The only sane response to protecting Californians from “extreme heat events” is to PREPARE to insure plenty of cheap, available energy. Obviously these people have pushed for the opposite! Which is, in fact, proof that this climate change B.S. from the Dems is a tool to impoverish and weaken us. ALL of us, including “underserved communities.” Just look at the facts of it. But the color-coded charts will be like a god that justifies whatever they have in store, and people will obey. As you know….

  3. If global warming was true why are all the highest temperature recorded in the early 1900’s, hottest day in Fresno CA July 8, 1905, 115 degrees. Hottest day ever recorded was 134 degrees in Death Valley, California, on July 10, 1913. Coldest day in Fresno CA Jan. 6, 1913, 17 degrees. The lowest temperature recorded in California was at Boca, -45° F was observed on January 20, 1937. So is climate change just a political talking point. You decide, but I think its BS!! Funny when I was a child and got hot in the summer I would get in the shade, guess common sense is gone we need government to tell us its hot. When will they make up one for cold weather, how will we know it’s cold LOL. Remember the old days when everyone had swamp coolers, yet I never heard of anyone dying due to the heat and most farm labor was done by hand, and no AC on the tractors.

  4. “‘This week’s unprecedented heat wave is a painful reminder of the costs and impacts of climate change – and it won’t be the last,’ said Governor Newsom after signing AB 2238”

    I didn’t realize Gov. Newsom was a climate scientist. Amazing!

  5. Don’t we already have a government heat warning system?

    It’s call weather.gov. It even gives the high and low temperatures.

  6. Did everyone catch that Newsom wore a fleece jacket, while speaking of the sweltering temps and need to conserve energy… Must have been really cold in that building LOL
    Just a reminder, the founder of Greenpeace and thousands of scientists dispute this claim. Guess Fauci and Newsom ARE “Science” now

  7. So we are going to organize, create, and pay a group of liberal idiots to arrange a color chart much like the COVID color charts to convince people they are too stupid to know it is HOT outside and this is an EMERGENCY! Makes perfect sense, great idea Newsom.

  8. Thank you for saving me a bunch of keystrokes Jack…

    I found it interesting that many of the heat records recently broken went back to the 1950’s ’60’s and ’70’s or EARLIER, per articles from AccuWeather.com…

    All of the records broken were from WAY before “climate change” and “global warming” before it became the political Trojan horse of the moment…

    All this “climate change” bullshot is political cover for wealth transfer and payback patronage from the Communist Chinese who are angling for a weakened United States and economic opportunity to sell us solar panels and EV batteries…

  9. This is about fear mongering and manipulation of public opinion, NOT “It’s just simply about hotter temperatures and putting out a system to help warn people. ”

    When will Republicans grow a spine and speak truth to lies?

  10. If Noisome cared even the slightest bit about the states citizens and the negative effects of heat he would work to drive down energy costs instead of working “tirelessly” to cripple energy production. The high cost of energy is directly correlated to the economy and the welfare of people. Make AC affordable again!!!

  11. I can see why the Republicans are not winning elections. They all vote for stupid bills like this one. Not one Republican voted against this.

    Isn’t it pretty obvious that the only reason this bill is here is to scare people about “climate change”? Yet, Republicans voted for this?

    This is right out of the bill’s text.

    “The latest California Climate Change Assessment projects hotter, longer, and more frequent heat events. ”

    This is pure nonsense. What is the matter with the Republicans in this state? I am so disgusted with the California Republican Party. It needs new leadership.

  12. It’s no joke. They know what they’re doing and laying the groundwork for it right now. Was the Governor’s legal suspension and control over our freedoms during Covid a joke? They learned from Covid how to circumvent the rights of the people. Whether you buy into climate change or not, politicians see it as an opportunity to implement broad controls over our lives and freedoms in how we live, when and how much energy we can use, when we can drive, on and on. THIS STATE IS IN SERIOUS JEOPARDY and voters don’t seem to care! Newsome will be re-elected. How can this be?

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