Props 2010/23/

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= PROPOSITION 23 -- SUSPENSION OF AIR POLLUTION CONTROL LAWS, specifically AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. AB 32 requires that by 2020, the level of emissions of greenhouse gases in the state must be reduced to their level in 1990. This would require an approximate 25% reduction over the level of emissions in 2006, the year the bill was signed.

The California Environmental Protection Agency is charged with implementing the provisions of AB 32. Suspends the state's greenhouse gas reduction law until California's unemployment rate has been 5.5 percent or less for four consecutive quarters. Suspends requirements for increased renewable energy and cleaner fuel, as well as mandatory emission reporting and fee requirements for major polluters such as power plants and oil refineries. Major funding support provided by Valero (a Texas-based oil refiner and wholesaler), Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, World Oil Corp., Tower Energy Group, Tesoro Companies, Southern Counties Oil Co., and Jaco Oil Co.== Argument == According to the California Employment Development Department, there have been only three periods since 1976 when unemployment in the state remained below 5.5% for four or more quarters:

   * January 1988 through December 1989
   * October 1999 through June 2001
   * October 2005 through June 2007

What this means is that Prop 23 does not merely suspend AB23, it essentially kills it. With unemployment in California at around the 12% level, it is very unlikely for it to get down to 5.5% for the foreseeable future.

By linking the reduction of greenhouse gasses with unemployment, the supporters of Prop 23 are relying on scaring people who are already in a vulnerable position or are sympathetic with the plight of the unemployed.

While it may be true that the implementation of AB32 would have a small, negative impact on employment, there are always trade-offs in times of transition. What good are jobs if we live in an unhealthy environment and continue on the road to global warming and its catastrophic impact. It is imperative that we move from a fossil fuel economy to clean, green one and that is what AB32 mandates.

Currently, the bulk, $1.4 million, of the funding for Prop 23 comes from out of state with another $700K from in-state, $300K of that coming from Occidental Petroleum. New funding reports are due to be filed with the Secretary of State by August 2nd.

Recommended Position

If you believe that global warming is real and that we must move quickly toward a clean, green economy, then definitely vote NO on Prop 23.