Dirty Energy Prop especially Dangerous to Folks of Color
Today, we are four months away from Election Day on November 2. And the statewide movement against Prop 23 – the Dirty Energy Proposition – is going full force. Every day, blogposts, Facebook rants and tweets come out taking a stand for California’s green economy and against greedy Texas oil companies. By the time we reach election day, the volume of writing and news coverage on the Dirty Energy Proposition will fill up a warehouse.
Tuesday this week, the most important blog post so far in this campaign hit the blogosphere. The Latino Coalition for a Healthy California (LCHC) came out swinging on the Green For All website with a post entitled “The Dirty Energy Proposition Is Not For Us.” They declare unequivocally that Prop 23 “is dangerous especially for California's Latino communities.”
Why is this important?
In my view it represents growing leadership amongst communities of color to fight against Texas oil and our climate crisis and for a cleaner, healthier, and yes, more prosperous way of life.
The Dirty Energy Proposition, by rolling back California’s clean air standards, will hurt low-income communities and people of color first and worst. Those who already suffer the worst air pollution would be doomed to even higher rates of asthma and lung cancer. Not to mention, Prop 23 would stunt job growth in the green economy, one of the fastest growing source of jobs to Californians. Given the high rates of unemployment in communities of color, any ballot measure that prevents job growth is of huge concern.
As Chad Silva from LCHC points out, “pollution levels from major industrial polluters are 70% higher in California's low-income communities and communities of color than in its white communities.”
It is exciting and important that LCHC – an organization focused on health and the Latino community – is fighting back against big Texas oil. Prop 23 isn’t just a threat to the environment. It’s a threat to the well-being and health of all families in California, especially those of us who stand to lose the most from pollution and our society’s addiction to oil.
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