Saturday, October 30, 2010

The Environment & Politics

The topic on yesterday's agenda was the environmental propositions that Californians will be voting on this coming Tuesday. We looked at the Sierra Club's voter's election endorsements which can be found on their website.

Here's some background information on each of the propositions that the Sierra Club has taken a stance on:

Prop 20 (NO): Prop 20 would tilt the rules for drawing U.S. House districts in ways which would systematically decrease the number of environmental champions in the California Congressional delegation, and also systematically decrease the ethnic diversity of that delegation. (Gerrymandering)

Prop 21 (YES):Proposition 21 would ensure a dedicated and reliable funding stream for state parks through an $18 annual State Park Access Pass surcharge and, in return, would provide vehicles subject to the surcharge free, year-round admission to state parks.

For more information on Proposition 21, please visit

Prop 23 (NO): Big Texas oil companies are trying to buy their way out of cleaning up their California refineries and fuels. Companies like Valero and Tesoro recently announced that they plan on fully funding a November ballot initiative that would halt clean energy efforts and pollution control standards aimed at cleaning up our air and atmosphere for our kids and future generations.

Prop 25 (YES):Sierra Club supports Proposition 25, which would allow state budgets to be passed by a simple majority of each house of the Legislature. The anti-democratic two-thirds requirement for passing budgets has created opportunities for anti-environmental mischief. One of the most egregious examples came in 2007, when 14 Senate Republicans held the budget hostage to their demand for non-fiscal legislation weakening the California Environmental Quality Act’s application to global warming.

Prop 25 would move us closer to fiscal sanity and remove one avenue for anti-environmental legislative schemes.

Prop 26 (NO): The core question raised by Prop 26 is: who pays? Who pays to clean up air pollution, oil spills and toxic waste? Who pays for the health consequences of tobacco and alcohol addiction, of lead poisoning and diesel exhaust? Exxon, Phillip Morris and the other special interests behind Prop 26 want you, the taxpayers, to pay. They want to get off the hook for mitigating the damage they do.

(source: Sierra Club CA's November Election Endorsements)

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