One of the more interesting votes in California last November was the vote AGAINST Proposition 23. The vote was 61% No to 38% Yes. The Suspend Air Pollution Control Law (AB32) – Proposition 23 – proposed to push back the timeline of the implementation of The Global Warming Solutions Act (AB32) until unemployment in the state dropped to a more acceptable level of 5.5%. As of September 2010 unemployment in California was at 12.4%.
The Global Warming Solutions Act (AB32) was signed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2006. It was passed as a result of the now pretty much debunked (or at least highly questioned) theory that fossil‐based energy produces greenhouse gases that are the primary contributors to climate change. AB32 set the 2020 greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal into law. The reduction measures to meet the 2020 target were to be adopted at the start of 2011. The reduction measures address many sources of polluting emissions and the standards they are required to obtain by the year 2020. In reviewing just one of these reduction measures, the California Renewable Energy Standard requires a Renewable Energy Credit of 20% between the years 2012 – 2014, meaning that 20% of the energy supply must be provided through renewable energy sources such as wind and solar. Looking at this single item in the reduction measures, one can see the massive regulatory demands for compliance in tracking emissions, monitoring emissions and procedures for applications for acceptance of renewable electricity credits. It also provides for assessing fines accruing DAILY for non-compliance. This is in addition to the cap and trade provisions that have been established by AB32 wherein California is working with six other western states and four Canadian provinces through the Western Climate Initiative.
Alternative sources of energy are dramatically more expensive than conventional coal power. An article in The Morning Bell from The Heritage Foundation on October 21, 2010 reveals the prices of energy that President Barack Obama’s very own Energy Information Administration (EIA) projects for various sources of electricity per megawatt hour in 2016 (based on 2008 dollars) as follows:
- Conventional Coal Power $ 78.10
- Onshore Wind Power $ 149.30
- Offshore Wind Power $ 191.10
- Thermal Solar Power $ 256.60
- Photo-voltaic Solar Power $ 396.10
By not passing Proposition 23, California has made the decision to follow their idealistic path to green energy solutions at the expense of skyrocketing energy costs, as any present alternative to conventional fossil-fuel based energy production can be up to five times more expensive.
California is hoping that its future economic growth will be in becoming a leader in the “green jobs” industry. An analysis by Green Jobs Ready of the voting results concludes that Californians remain committed to upholding environmental standards and remain committed to greenhouse gas emission laws.
In the Executive Summary of Assembly Bill 32 the 2007 Integrated Energy Policy Report dated December 5, 2007 it states:
“Decisions affecting land use directly affect energy use and the consequent production of greenhouse gases, primarily because of the strong relationship between where we live and work and our transportation needs. Significant efforts are necessary to reduce vehicle miles traveled to meet the state’s emission reduction goals. California must begin reversing the current 2 percent annual growth rate of vehicle miles traveled. Research shows that increasing a community’s density and its accessibility to job centers are the two most significant factors for reducing vehicle miles traveled.” This is the reason for the push by the administration for high speed rail to be built across the country and for light rail systems in metropolitan areas.
On a national note, cap and trade legislation remains stalled in the Senate, and with the public becoming more aware of the disastrous effects it would have on energy prices it seems to have been put on the back burner for now. There is, however, an attempt to pass a watered-down version of government mandated Renewable Energy Standards. This is essentially California’s AB 32 at the federal level. The effects would be the same as cap and trade; higher energy prices and millions of jobs lost . Many other states have already adopted Renewable and Alternative Energy Portfolio Standards, as shown on this map from the Pew Center on Global Climate Change.
There is so much being done at the local and state levels, as well as at the federal level, in passing legislation with overreaching regulations having to do with “climate change” and greenhouse gas emissions. “Exchanges”, “carbon credits”, “renewable electric credits”, are all just different names for a gigantic scheme by government and exchange brokers to make money out of nothing at all, and take any honestly earned wealth from individuals and businesses alike.
It is hard to believe that the proposition to legalize marijuana did not pass, because they must all be smoking the stuff!