President Obama won glowing praise this morning from California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) for directing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to reconsider its 2007 decision not to let California set higher vehicle emissions standards for its state.

The California Republican said the decision shows that California and environmental law "now have a strong ally in the White House."

"With this announcement from President Obama less than a week into his administration, it is clear that California and the environment now have a strong ally in the White House. Allowing California and other states to aggressively reduce their own harmful vehicle tailpipe emissions would be a historic win for clean air and for millions of Americans who want more fuel-efficient, environmentally-friendly cars," Schwarzenegger said in a statement issued by his office.

"My administration has been fighting for this waiver since 2005 and we will not give up until it is granted because we owe it to our children and to our grandchildren to do more than just protect our natural resources, we must also work to improve them so that we leave behind an environment for future generations that is better than it is today," the governor continued.

Obama made the announcement this morning, potentially overturning one of the most controversial environmental decisions of the Bush administration. Obama's decision clears the way for California and other states to further limit greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles. California initially applied fo a waiver allowing it to do so in 2005.

Two of the House's most established California Democrats--House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry Waxman--also lauded Obama's decision.

Pelosi, in a statement released through her press office, hailed the announcement as a commitment to combat climate change:
This morning, President Obama signaled that our country can no longer afford to wait to combat the climate crisis and our dangerous dependence on foreign oil.