U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer wrote a piece in the Perspective section of last Sunday's San Jose Mercury News asking Californians to vote yes on Proposition 87. According to the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), Prop 87 would establish a $4 billion program to reduce oil and gasoline usage by 25 percent over the next 10 years while creating research and development incentives for alternative energies and alternative-fueled vehicles. The program would be funded by a tax placed upon oil companies that drill inside of the Golden State.

Boxer's argument is three-pronged. First, she says that Prop 87 would reduce harmful pollutants (like carbon dioxide) in the state's air by reducing gasoline use. Second, she states that 87 would reduce California's dependence on foreign oil by increasing investment in renewable energy research and implementation of wind, hydrogen, solar and biofuels energy sources. Third, she says that the state will see economic benefits. She points to a study done by the Tellus Institute in Boston finding that Proposition 87 would generate over 20,000 new jobs in California and raise the state domestic product by $2.4 billion annually.

The senator also stresses that if the proposition passes, oil companies will not be able to pass their additional expenses on to consumers as it would become illegal. She says that every oil-producing state in the country except for California already charges such a fee.

Which ever way you end up voting, make sure to get out to the polls on November 7th.

[Source: San Jose Mercury News]


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