In the U.S. today, we have the opportunity to change our future by electing new officials and choosing new laws which will have a bearing on whether we protect our environment, our health, our communities, and our planet.
One of the main races looming across the nation is focused in California where not only are new officials are being elected, but new legislation is also being proposed. Prop. 23, an initiative funded by two out of state oil companies, is working towards reversing California clean energy laws passed in 2006. If reversed, California will not be able to control major sources of greenhouse gas pollution until employment drop to 5.5 percent or less – essentially gutting the law.
Posing an even greater threat is Prop 26. If passed, Proposition 26 will define various state fees as taxes and require people’s votes instead of an action by a governing body to implement said taxes. So what is so bad about this? Well, many of the fees in question are directly related to environmental and health regulations from large polluting companies. A change in status from fees to taxes would likely shift more of the financial obligations for environmental issues to the general public.
The big race is for control of the House of Representatives and the Senate. Environmentalists anticipate losses in both the House and the Senate in today’s election, which could further impair action towards passing a climate change law.
In this midterm election it is up to the people of the United States to implement the change they want to see. The best advice: Don’t forget to vote!