California carbon is trading at a record low as legal threats, political opposition and rule changes plague the days leading up to the first auction of permits under the state’s greenhouse-gas program.

Less than a week before the first allowance sale, the program is facing scrutiny from legislators, economists and companies such as San Antonio-based Valero Energy Corp. (VLO), whose chief executive officer described the regulations last week as being “hijacked” by academics and extremists. Two Oregon power utilities say that the state may end up unfairly governing trade outside its jurisdiction.

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