The fabulous 350 BAA Legislative Communications Committee!

As the climate crisis deepens we are working hard for stronger policies and faster actions from the local to state level.

350 Bay Area Action’s all-volunteer Legislative Committee worked hard all year for stronger climate legislation in Sacramento, including:   

  • A just transition away from ALL fossil fuels and to clean energy
  • Zero emissions transportation and decarbonized (electric) buildings
  • A strong foundation of climate justice in state and local climate policies
  • Local decentralized clean energy from stronger community choice energy programs

The state legislative session ended Sept 13, and 350BAA experienced some wins and some disappointments. This session was marked by Big Oil weakening bills with many amendments that passed, as the Fossil Fuel lobbyists tried to create barriers to implementing 100% clean electricity by 2045 (SB100).

 

Brief summary of key bills

  • SB 1 would have protected California’s climate policies from Trump’s Federal rollbacks. We worked hard with our partners to pass SB1, and then Governor Newsom VETOED it. Big loss!
  • AB 342 prohibits new oil and gas shipments across state land, which also stops shipments of new oil and gas from Federal lands adjacent to state land. Passed and signed. Big win!
  • SB 127 increased protection for walkers and cyclists on state highways. It was an important step towards creating cities for people and neighborhoods rather than only for cars. We worked hard with partner groups for a big win in Legislature, then VETOED by governor. Big loss!
  • SB 54 and AB 1080 would phase out single use plastics by 2030. These bills were doing great in the Legislature with lots of public support. Then Big Oil, which makes Big Profits from making plastics from fracking byproduct, fought behind a fake “recycle plastics” group to weaken support for these bills in the final stretch. These bills were pulled from a final vote and became two-year bills. Big push needed to Ban Single Use Plastic next session!
  • AB 857 allows local governments to charter local public banks, in partnership with “existing local financial institutions” so as to increase the lending capacity of the local banking system. Passed and signed. Big win!
  • AB 936 requires shipping entities to develop additional oil spill response plans for tar sands (non-floating crude oil) and requires additional liability for companies doing this shipping. Passed and signed. Big win!
  • SB 44 and SB 210 were aimed at cleaning up big diesel trucks, which are the single biggest source of smog and air pollution. SB44 started off as “Ditch Diesel” to mandate clean diesel trucks, but the amended law was passed and signed by Gov. SB 210 that mandates smog checks for big trucks was passed and signed, and it will ensure enforcement of the current regulations that require trucks to meet emissions standards. Important step forward to reduce air pollution!

ACT NOW for Clean Trucks! Now that we have passed a weak SB 44, we’re joining a campaign with other groups https://www.electrictrucksnow.com/ to urge the state Air Resource Board (ARB) to set an ambitious realistic target for Zero Emissions trucks . Please sign this petition to the ARB now.

We also opposed  7 bills that would undercut operations of our local community choice energy providers (CCAs). We were quite successful, as the most consequential did not pass or were made harmless with amendments, but the following 2 did pass and were signed. Efforts to support our CCAs will continue next year.

  • AB 1584 – Electricity: Cost Allocation – opposed but passed
  • SB 520 – Provider of Last Resort Electricity Services – opposed but passed

We want to thank all of you who took action this summer calling and writing your legislators on important bills. Your voice and actions really matter.

Together we can make a big impact this coming year and create the change we need—eliminate fossil fuel production and use in California!

 

350 BAA volunteers joined powerful environmental allies (U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier!) in Sacramento for Green California Advocacy Day.