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Saturday, August 12, 2006

for those of you who VOTE in California

Environmental Voter's Guide to California Ballot Initiatives:
This November's ballot will be one of the most crowded in recent memory. In addition to the candidates, there will be at least fifteen ballot measures. Among the crowd are three initiatives that could dramatically affect California's environment and public health. Two of these measures would have a positive impact on key environmental concerns. The third will not only have a devastating effect on taxpayers' pocketbooks, but will also significantly undercut California's ability to carry out the environmental laws.

Proposition 84 (Support): "The Clean Water, Parks and Coastal Protection Bond" would authorize $5.4 billion for water quality and natural resources protection programs. Current funding for natural resources and environmental protection is critically low. Prop. 84 will invest in California's natural infrastructure to ensure that Californians have access to safe drinking water, are better protected from floods, and continue to have opportunities to enjoy parks, rivers, lakes, beaches, bays and coastline. Restoring the San Joaquin River and protecting coastal water quality and marine resources - top NRDC priorities - would get much needed funding.

Proposition 87 (Support): "The Clean Alternative Energy Act" would create a portfolio of clean fuels, clean-fuel vehicles and clean-fuel infrastructure that could cut California's annual petroleum needs by 4 billion gallons (equivalent to about 25 percent of current consumption), with cumulative reductions over the next decade of 10 billion gallons. Funding for these clean-fuel projects would come from a modest extraction fee on oil from California lands. Currently, California is the only oil producing state that does not levy a fee on oil extraction - Alaska, Louisiana, Florida, and Texas all require a certain percentage of oil revenues in exchange for access to oil resources. The California Attorney General has determined that the initiative specifically prohibits oil producers from passing the fee on to consumers. The measure would raise at least $4 billion to promote commercialization of biofuels, efficient vehicles and technology research, without increasing energy costs to consumers or adding new demands on California's general fund.

Proposition 90 (Oppose): The falsely named "Government Acquisition, Regulation of Private Property" constitutional amendment would throw California's system of environmental protection into chaos. It's a "Taxpayer Trap" that would force taxpayers to pay for basic protections for our environment and communities. Prop. 90 would make pollution and other damaging human activities a property right, and would force taxpayers to pay to stop the damage. Prop. 90 will result in thousands of lawsuits, increased red tape, and enormous costs to taxpayers. Furthermore, this measure would undermine the State's ability to enforce many of the environmental protection laws that environmental groups and other organizations have fought so hard to establish. Funded by property rights extremists, Prop. 90 is part of a national assault on environmental regulations. For an excellent background article, please see the High Country News feature Taking Liberties.

posted by Alix @ 9:25 PM

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