For Immediate Release, November 9, 2022
Contact: Maya Golden-Krasner, (213) 215-3729, email@example.com
California Governor Nabs Election Victory, Urged to Act Immediately on Climate Crisis
SACRAMENTO, Calif.— California voters handed Gov. Gavin Newsom a decisive victory on Tuesday, giving him wide latitudes to act boldly in his second term to prevent climate disaster. Armed with widespread support for his reelection, Newsom should accelerate important climate action over the next few years, including immediately halting new fossil fuel extraction permits and phasing out existing production.
“Gov. Newsom has signaled he’s ready to take on Big Oil. Now he has the mandate from voters to follow through,” said Maya Golden-Krasner, deputy climate director at the Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund. “We’re running out of time. It’s more important than ever that we stand up to the fossil fuel industry to prevent climate catastrophe, rapidly phase out fossil fuel extraction, and accelerate the shift to clean renewable energy.”
California, which is poised to become the world’s fourth largest economy, approved a suite of climate measures this year, including stronger car and truck emissions rules, historic health-and-safety setbacks that protect communities from oil and gas drilling, and more ambitious targets for clean electricity. Recently Newsom called for a windfall profit tax on California oil producers and refiners.
These measures are important and encouraging steps, but still fall short of the progress needed to address the climate emergency. As the United Nations climate conference COP27 begins in Egypt this week, the U.N. Secretary General has warned that we are on a “highway to climate hell,” and has cautioned we are out of time to take climate action. Meanwhile, oil companies are undertaking a signature-gathering initiative to overturn the safety setbacks that protect frontline communities.
Some of the most important climate action that California can take include:
- Immediately ending new permits for fossil fuel extraction and rapidly phasing out existing production;
- Enacting just transition measures to assist fossil fuel workers and frontline communities during the shift to a fully renewable energy system;
- Increasing the state’s goal for 2030 emissions reduction to 55% or more and charting a course that maximizes pollution reductions without relying on false solutions like carbon capture, use and storage to meet the state’s goals;
- Enacting strong rules for gas vehicles that will be sold before the full zero-emission vehicle sales mandate takes effect in 2035;
- Building out the state’s electric-vehicle infrastructure and access, prioritizing communities that have borne the brunt of the state’s fossil fuel pollution.
Drought, heat, and deadly fires are already wreaking havoc across the state, taking lives, harming health and ecosystems, and costing billions of dollars. Low-income and Black and Brown communities are hit hardest by climate disaster.
“It’s now or never,” said Golden-Krasner. “The actions California takes on fossil fuels now will determine whether we can maintain a livable planet. Gov. Newsom and our other newly elected officials have a lot to accomplish, and we will support them in taking up the challenge.”
The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund is a national nonprofit organization that advocates for legislation and legislators that will advance a progressive environmental agenda. The Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund is the 501(c)(4) affiliate of the Center for Biological Diversity, but these organizations’ names are not interchangeable. This news release is from the Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, not the Center for Biological Diversity.