California Proposition 23

Proposition 23 is the result of an initiative launched by Texas oil giants Valero Energy Inc. and Tesoro Corporation to postpone enforcement  of AB 32. The ballot initiative would delay enforcement until unemployment in California stays under 5.5% for an entire year. California unemployment is currently at about 12%.

Image source: Google Public Data

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How do Californians feel about Prop 23?

The public: A poll by the Public Policy Institute of America this month indicates that 67% of California residents support AB 32 (via LA Times).

Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger:  “This initiative sponsored by greedy Texas oil companies would cripple California’s fastest-growing economic sector, reverse our renewable energy policy and decimate our environmental progress for the benefit of these oil companies’ profit margins” (via LA Times).

Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Meg Whitman: Whitman has not taken a formal stand on Prop 23. However, AB 32 authorizes a governor to delay some of the provisions for up to a year in the event of “threat of significant economic harm.” While campaigning for the Republican primary, Whitman stated that we would suspend AB 32 on her first day in office (via SF Chronicle).

Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Jerry Brown: “Addressing  climate change is one of the great challenges of our time, something that California has been a leader on,” said Sterling Clifford, Brown’s campaign spokesman (via SF Chronicle).

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The full text of Prop 23 is available here.

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The Yes on Prop 23 campaign has filed suit against Attorney General Jerry Brown over the language that will go on the ballot to describe the proposition. The ballots of be printed in mid-August will say that the measure “Suspends Air Pollution Control Laws Requiring Major Polluters to Report and Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions That Cause Global Warming Until Unemployment Drops Below Specified Level for Full Year.” More information in the LA Times.

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