• Aug 9th 2010 at 1:56PM
  • 11

No other state in the union has embraced both environmental regulation and direct voter democracy to the same degree that California has with its proposition system and there is another big issue coming to the ballot this November. Proposition 23, if it passes, would suspend California's greenhouse reduction rules indefinitely. California's Assembly Bill 32 requires the state's carbon emissions to be slashed to 1990 levels by 2020, imposing a huge economic cost on some individuals and businesses while at the same time creating a wide range of opportunities for new businesses.

A number of startups have sprung up to help other businesses monitor and reduce their emissions along with development of both wind and solar power generation projects. However, oil companies are not happy about the prospect of cutting CO2 emissions and Texas-based firms Valero Energy and Tesoro are backing Proposition 23, which some refer to as the California Jobs Initiative, while opponents call it the Dirty Energy Proposition, according to BallotPedia. Of course, the Proposition would not be enforced until California unemployment drops below 5.5 percent for four consecutive quarters. Given that the current California unemployment rate is at 12 percent, that could take quite some time, and you'd think that would take some wind out of the oil companies' sails.

The vast majority of ballot propositions fail to pass; those that do are typically backed by expensive campaigns from some supporter with a vested interest in the outcome. This is what we have here, but even big-money backing is no guarantee of the result. Current polls say that anywhere between 48 and 67 percent of Californians support Assembly Bill 32.

[Source: Green Car Reports]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      The writers at ABG need to get their facts straight. The goal of Proposition 23 is to freeze the provisions of AB 32 until California's unemployment rate drops to 5.5% or below for four consecutive quarters. Whoever wrote this article implied that would happen anyway.

      In addition, a Sacramento judge recently found the ballot language misleading. Language drafted by Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown referred to “major polluters,” which the judge changed to “sources of emissions.” The judge also narrowed the wording of the title from “suspends air pollution control laws” to “suspends implementation of air pollution control law (AB 32).” The Brown language had in the initiative summary that it would require the state to “abandon” the law, which the judge changed to “suspend.”

      But hey, why let facts get in the way of a good story?
      • 5 Years Ago
      When will this nightmare be over? I am glad that alternative energy is starting to win rather than looking like a joke...

      Good luck stopping California's constantly tightening emission regulations. It won't happen. They are there for a reason. It is the most populous state in North America. One only needs to look at pictures of pre-emissions controls Los Angeles ( and surrounding areas ) to see why.
        • 5 Years Ago
        We're losing our population because the economy has cratered. Out in Riverside county you have unemployment near 20%.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Seeing a lot of those Californians here in Oregon. I bet they have gone to the east coast too.

        I hear this happens during every recession. I have parents in Riverside and heard it was bad just looking at the statistics.. apparently it's getting crime ridden too. I guess epic unemployment and crime go hand in hand.
        • 5 Years Ago

        Err... I don't think it's 20% I think it was at 12% ish (mint.com had a article on it). I used to live there and got my degree there too. It was certainly high but it was also the 2nd city in California with job growth (according to Mint.com). ESRI, in Redland, is expanding like hell up there. The technology sector growth in Riverside is huge. Why? Cause most of my friends are employed around there.

      • 5 Years Ago
      "Of course, the Proposition would not be enforced until California unemployment drops below 5.5 percent for four consecutive quarters."

      You've got it backwards. Proposition 23, if passed, would suspend enforcement of the Assembly bill 32 until unemployment drops below 5.5 percent for 4 consecutive quarters, thereby blocking efforts to reduce carbon emissions to 1990 levels.

      Ironically, the disruptions that global warming could cause would likely keep unemployment high, thus permanently blocking efforts to reduce global warming!

      This proposition is a global warming deniers wet dream. Of course, when global warming becomes obvious, it will likely become their nightmare.
      • 5 Years Ago
      one thing is to go after the automotive industry another is to go after other non related industries that will eventually raise the prices in home electricity and buildings materials etc....while in a down economy?
        • 5 Years Ago
        @ Level, you provide a good reason for a PV array, no price increase for electricity with PV's tied to the grid or off grid. Raise the price as much as you want, I will sell it back to you at the same price. Let see H2 do that? Compared to gas, electricity prices are a stone cold deal and fluxuate far less. I can't very easily build a refinery to get my gas cheaper, the oil corps know this. Bio diesel is a option, if I chose to propel my self down the road with a heater that is 20% efficient at doing so.
        • 5 Years Ago
        Dont worry the government will take care of you. Only the rich people will have to pay for any price increases.
        • 5 Years Ago

        Only because the rich people fed the middle class to the alligators first.
      • 5 Years Ago
      California already has a history of punishing those residential customers who have the temerity to use A/C by imposing punitive Tier 3/4 rates.

      How can consumers trust them to regulate carbon emissions?

      Most 'cap & trade' schemes give huge carbon allowances to major polluters and transfer the cost back to residential customers.
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