California Elected Officials Call on Governor to Phase out Fossil Fuel Production
Joe Michaels, Iheart Radio, Feb. 14, 2020 — Hundreds of the state’s elected officials are calling on California Governor Gavin Newsom to phase out fossil fuel production. More than three hundred officials have signed a letter urging the governor to enact a comprehensive climate emergency plan.
Mayor Randell Stone of Chico: We have to start pertaining energy from sources that are renewable sources. What we’re asking that the governor to do is to take the supply-side initiatives and start to curtail by mandate our dependence on fossil fuels.
Joe Michaels: Chico mayor Randall Stone says the effort is also focusing on making incremental changes in local communities.
Mayor Randall Stone: What we did in the city of Chico was first we declared a Climate Emergency and immediately moved to found a standing committee to look at all of the city’s policies from community development, to police, to fire, to public works. What is the impact of the things that we’re doing today and how can we have a greater impact on our greenhouse gas emissions and climate change initiatives by changing this action. So it’s literally reviewing everything that the city does for municipalities standpoint and that hopefully is going to curb some of that demand that’s driving more and more fossil fuels to be produced in this area.
Joe: Davis Mayor Bret Lee says it’s well many cities have taken action. The climate crisis demands action at all levels of government, and it’s time for the state to step up.
Mayor Bret Lee of Davis: We want to make sure that across the board the state of California is moving towards greater use of sustainability, sustainable sources of energy and things like that. I think we’re making good progress but given the absence of leadership at the national level, really the weight of this falls on California.
Joe: Among m suggestions is getting PGA any officials to change their way of thinking.
Mayor Lee: PG&E right now as an investor-owned utility and their responsibility is to their investors. Given the past history of PG&E I think it’s time to think about a new model. A new model would put the customers and the state first and foremost not the distant Wall Street investors. I think it’s important because we have reliability issues we have safety issues and of California hopes to maintain its status as a technological leader we need to have a dependable electricity supply.
Joe: Alex Cornell du Houx, representing Elected Officials to Protect California, a bipartisan network calling for a fossil fuel phase-out, says the cost of not taking action is greater than that of making changes.
Alexander Cornell du Houx: The oil industry likes to put fear in people’s minds that all these catastrophic events will happen if you limit fossil fuel production. The reality is California is much more concerned about the fires, the droughts, and the health effects of having oil wells next to people’s houses, like what happened to Nielle. The way forward is preventing fossil fuels from creating these damages.
Joe: The officials say transitioning to a clean energy economy will grow jobs and stop what they call environmental health injustices that are happening disproportionately in low-income communities and communities of color. I’m Joe Michael’s.