Scaling “Local”: The Implications of Greenhouse Gas Regulation in San Bernardino County

This Essay analyzes local climate regulation in San Bernardino County as a window into the complexities of defining a local scale in an interconnected world. In so doing, it aims to contribute to the Symposium’s broader dialogue about “Territory Without Boundaries” and the Panel’s more specific discussion of “Urban Territory in a Global World.” As a purely territorial matter, U.S. cities and counties differ substantially in their sizes, the quantity and physical characteristics of their land, the size and density of their populations, and the needs of their citizens. Structurally, these localities remain administrative subunits of states, but they also have significant autonomy Finally, their substantive decision-making requires them to engage with a wide range of actors at different scales as they make decisions about multiscalar problems.