California Can Not Afford Prop 23
It's unfortunate that Harry Alford of the Beltway-based National Black Chamber of Commerce didn't come clean about who is behind his attack on California's clean energy and clean air standards, known as AB 32. His organization is heavily funded by oil interests, including Exxon Mobil, and has testified in Congress against any type of standard designed to reduce carbon and other pollutants.
If Mr. Alford had been in California recently, he'd see the economic prosperity being generated by our state's leadership in
clean energy. More than 500,000 Californians are employed by more than 12,000 companies in clean technology -- the fastest growing sector in our state's economy. Another $10 billion of venture capital is being invested in new companies, which will result in tens of thousands of new jobs. These jobs are up and down the career ladder and are in Silicon Valley as well as rural counties especially hard-hit by unemployment. Proposition 23, an effort backed by two Texas oil companies, would pull the rug out from under clean tech, driving unemployment up.
In addition, according to a recently-released study, communities of color and poor neighborhoods will be hurt first and worst by the likes of Prop 23, Proposition 23 will kill our state's clean energy standards and lead to worse air pollution in communities already burdened by too much toxic pollution and too much poverty.
It is no coincidence that Texas oil companies Valero and Tesoro own oil refineries that cause respiratory problems. The two Texas companies have poured $3.5 million into Prop 23 -- and they are among the worst polluters in California, as well as the United States, according to a study from the University of Massachusetts.
If we abandon our state's leadership in clean energy, the cost of energy to California families and businesses will soar by 33 percent by 2020. No one is hurt more by rising energy prices than low-income families and communities of color. That is why groups like NAACP-California and the Latino Coalition for a Healthy California have come out against Prop 23.
Prop 23 is a lose-lose for Californians, and particularly for people of color. It will kill jobs and hurt employment opportunities, endanger public health, and cause energy prices to soar. We cannot afford Prop 23.
Apr 12, 2011
Jan 11, 2011
Nov 23, 2010
Aug 02, 2010