Two Propositions Put California’s Clean Economy at Risk

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Amid the flurry of local and state ballot initiatives Californians will be voting on next month, we’re here to highlight two that have tremendous implications for our clean energy future:

Prop 23: Puts Climate Change Action & Renewable Progress on Hold:

VOTE NO

Funded by out-of-state oil companies, Proposition 23 would suspend California’s landmark greenhouse gas law – AB 32. As if that’s not bad enough, Prop 23 isn’t just about cap-and-trade. A number of California’s clean energy policies, including our 33% renewable energy requirement and low carbon fuel standard, are wrapped into the state regulator’s AB 32 authority. If Prop 23 passes, that whole suite of clean economy policies are at risk too.

Prop 26: Restricts Funding for Environmental & Public Health Regulation:

VOTE NO

Although it has received just a fraction of the attention of its Prop 23 compadre, Prop 26 (also backed by big oil, along with big alcohol & big tobacco) could be just as detrimental to green economic growth. Prop 26 seeks to redefine a number of “fees” that currently fund most of our environmental and public health initiatives as “taxes.” That’s not just semantics. Fees can be passed by a simple majority vote, but taxes require two-thirds majority, a tall order for our decidedly log-jammed legislature. In the entirely likely case that the two-thirds vote can’t be reached, funding for these critical programs shifts from polluters (for example) to general taxpayers – or the programs are simply cut in these times of tight budgets. AB 32 is just one of many programs likely to be hurt if Prop 26 passes.

These environmental policies have helped make California the leader in clean tech innovation and business growth that we are today. Just last week we got two timely reminders of the economic opportunity that’s at stake here. The Solar Foundation released its national solar jobs census – California claimed the top position with 36,000 solar jobs, more than five times the number 2 state. SEIA’s Solar Works for America website helped put a face on those jobs. Then the same week, a whopping 32 California cleantech companies made the Cleantech Global 100 list of up-and-comers likely to make big near-term market impacts – an auspicious number, to be sure, and one that far outstrips any other state or country.

Prop 23 would put the state’s successful green policies on hold, and Prop 26 would undermine their funding. Both propositions pose a major risk to California’s growing clean energy economy. And neither are options that California can afford.

Here’s a great new ‘No on 23′ video if you want to learn more about the proposition’s impact on health, jobs, national security and the economy:

Every vote counts, so please get to the polls or mail in those ballots to VOTE NO.

Vote Solar is a non-profit grassroots organization working to fight climate change and foster economic opportunity by bringing solar energy into the mainstream.

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Vote Solar is a non-profit grassroots organization working to fight climate change and foster economic opportunity by bringing solar energy into the mainstream.

  • http://CleanTechies.com Ceylan Thomson

    Great article and fabulous video – thanks, Vote Solar! To all of our readers: Please do anything you can to help spread the message – stumble, digg, like, tweet and forward to anybody you know – California will appreciate it. Thanks!

    • http://www.edouardstenger.com Edouard Stenger

      Thanks for the post and the awesome video.

      I believe that anyone willing to work in cleantech – and not only in California or even the USA – should spread the message. So I did it by Twitter and Facebook and will share on my blog as well !

      I hope California will keep moving forward on cleantech and renewables. It will be good for the state, the USA and the entire world.

  • Alison

    I would like to add prop 19 up there too because it not only poses a threat to California but our children too. More people will be smoking it and more people around children will see it and they will try it.

    When i was young my father did everything cocaine,marijuana,alcohol,cigarettes you name it! He did it and i actually wanted to go to middle school and sell people drugs and do drugs too, and i did and it’s only caused misery upon me a lot of my friends who smoked marijuana also told me how awful it was for them too i think it should be illegal not only in California but in all the other states aswell.