No on Proposition 10
As an environmental manager and director in the natural gas industry for 23 years, I’ve spent my career advocating greater use of clean natural gas and clean technologies for California. In appropriate uses, natural gas is a critical component of our energy portfolio that can reduce air pollution and emissions that lead to global warming.
I know from years in this business that not every scheme claiming to promote clean or renewable energy makes economic or environmental sense, especially when billions of precious and scarce taxpayer dollars are at stake.
That’s why I am voting NO on Proposition 10 on the November 4 ballot and urging all California voters to do the same.
Proposition 10’s corporate backers claim it is a measure to increase renewable energy use, improve our air and protect the global environment. In fact, well over half of its $5 billon in public subsidies is earmarked for an energy strategy that could actually increase California’s air pollution and global warming emissions.
Proposition 10 exempts natural gas vehicles from air pollution and greenhouse gas reduction requirements, giving them first and highest priority for billions in taxpayer-financed rebates over other promising domestic fuel strategies such as cellulosic ethanol, hydrogen and renewable electricity. It’s a misleading and irresponsible strategy with unethical designs.
Proposition 10 provides no assurance that taxpayer-subsidized vehicles will remain in California. In fact, it is quite likely that national and international corporations will purchase fleets of vehicles in California for use elsewhere, in order to receive generous rebates. Proposition 10 requires us to finance those rebates of up to $50,000 per vehicle with no accountability and a minimum of government oversight. That’s a bad deal for California taxpayers and our children who will be paying off this $10 billion in added debt over the next 30 years.
Several other clean technology incentive programs are already in effect that require older, high polluting vehicles to be retired or replaced in exchange for clean vehicle rebates. That’s an effective guarantee of air quality and global warming benefits. Proposition 10 fails to deliver even this basic benefit. That’s because its real motive is not cost-effectively reducing air pollution or greenhouse gas emissions, but building natural gas markets.
Proposition 10 saddles California taxpayers with $10 billion and 30 years of new state debt while unfairly disadvantaging the most promising emerging vehicle and fuel technologies, and it does so with no guarantee of environmental benefits to us or our children.
Please join me in supporting responsible and cost-effective energy and climate protection strategies. Vote NO on Proposition 10 on November 4.
/s/ Greg Vlasek
Former Executive Director
California Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition
From 1981 to 1994, Greg Vlasek worked as an environmental engineer and marketing administrator for Southern California Gas Company. He served as executive director of the California Natural Gas Vehicle Coalition based in Sacramento from 1994 to 2000 and was a regional manager for Pinnacle CNG Systems LLC from 2001 to 2003. He presently serves as a legislative representative in the Chairman’s Office of Legislative Affairs at the California Air Resources Board.