With national climate policy stalled in the Senate, hopes for policy progress rest on local, state and regional initiatives, like California's Global Warming Solutions Act (AB32). AB 32 is important because the state is looked to as a leading indicator of how progressive policy battles will play out, and because California's renewable energy economy is among the biggest.Adopted in 2006, AB 32 requires the state to come up with a plan for reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 1990 levels by 2020. That plan is due to come into effect in 2011 and the oil and gas industry is on trying to stop it with Proposition 23, spending millions of dollars to a campaign to indefinitely delay climate policy passed by California voters.
Big Texas oil interests have poured more than $8.3 million into win Proposition 23. If passed, Prop 23 would effectively kill California’s greenhouse gas emissions law by delaying implementation until the state's unemployment drops below 5.5% for four consecutive quarters. According to California activists Van Jones, Dolores Huerta and Pam Tau Lee, Prop 23 will kill jobs and prevent environmental improvements in communities of color. As Jones points out, “California attracted one out of every four dollars invested worldwide in clean energy technology last year. That terrifies the oil guys in Texas because they know if that continues the next energy breakthroughs that will eat into their profit margins will be coming out of California.” The job killer isn't the state's climate change program, "it is Prop 23 itself.”
Take action to stop Prop 23 (even if you don't live in California):
- Join Communities United against Prop 23 and donate.
- Learn about and support the California Climate and Agriculture Network to work with growers to oppose Prop 23. Growers get it: if climate change is not aggressively addressed, agriculture will be damaged dramatically.
- For more opportunities, check out Credo Action.
Pesticide Action Network joins grassroots movements across the state in opposition to Prop 23. For additional information see StopDirtyEnergyProp. For details on the role of Texas oil corporations in this proposition, visit the Union of Concerned Scientists.