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AJR-7 Green New Deal.(2019-2020)

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AJR7:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  July 01, 2019

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2019–2020 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Joint Resolution
No. 7


Introduced by Assembly Member Gloria
(Principal coauthor: Assembly Member Kalra)
(Coauthors: Assembly Members Berman, Bonta, Carrillo, Chiu, Friedman, Eduardo Garcia, Jones-Sawyer, Robert Rivas, and Mark Stone)

February 11, 2019


Relative to the Green New Deal.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AJR 7, as amended, Gloria. Green New Deal.
This measure would encourage the United States Congress to adopt climate policies, including those that might be adopted under the Green New Deal, that build upon California’s programs that have reduced greenhouse gas emissions while improving air and water quality, create new green jobs, and improve disadvantaged communities and that just climate actions offer the nation an opportunity to achieve community-mindful policies that California has successfully adopted while growing its economy.

This measure would encourage the United States Congress to enact a Green New Deal that would, among other things, comprehensively address our current climate emergency, transform our economy to one that places the health and wellness of communities at its center, promotes ecological resilience, and restores biodivesity.

Fiscal Committee: NO  

WHEREAS, Experts conclude we have a little over 10 years to begin rapidly reducing our global carbon emissions; and

WHEREAS, The United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) was established by the United Nations Environment Programme and the World Meteorological Organization in 1988 to provide policymakers with regular scientific assessments concerning climate change and its implications and potential future risks, as well as to put forward adaptation and mitigation strategies; and
WHEREAS, The IPCC is the leading world body for assessing the science related to climate change, its impacts and potential future risks, and possible response options; and
WHEREAS, The IPCC recently released a special report, the full name of which is “Global Warming of 1.5°C, an IPCC special report on the impacts of global warming of 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels and related global greenhouse gas emission pathways, in the context of strengthening the global response to the threat of climate change, sustainable development, and efforts to eradicate poverty”; and
WHEREAS, The IPCC report compares the impacts of climate change at 1.5 degree Celsius to 2 degrees Celsius and found that a change of overall climate of 2 degrees Celsius will result in more heat-related deaths, smaller crop yields, more people in poverty, and slower economic growth; and
WHEREAS, Preventing global temperatures from increasing is possible, but will require the complete transformation of our economy and unprecedented global cooperation; and
WHEREAS, The human impacts of climate change are real and felt now, from the new year-round wildfire season in California to the devastating hurricanes in Puerto Rico and Texas; and
WHEREAS, Recognizing the level of death and public health impacts and environmental destruction occurring today at just over 1 degree Celsius of global warming, the protection of public health and the achievement of global climate justice requires the reversal of global warming; and
WHEREAS, The emissions that accelerate climate change are also proven to cause serious harm to human health, and emissions from transportation, natural disasters like wildfires, industrial agriculture, fossil fuels, and industrial facilities create unhealthy air quality; and
WHEREAS, Carbon-emitting facilities, which facilities and carbon-emitting mobile and area sources are concentrated in low-income communities and communities of color, also color and release toxic copollutants that harm health, quality of life, and cause premature death; and
WHEREAS, Low-income communities of color face higher exposure to pollutants and are more vulnerable to the impacts of climate change; and
WHEREAS, Studies show that despite California’s climate policies in-state carbon emissions have increased in certain sectors, primarily located in disadvantaged communities, thereby exacerbating poor air quality; and
WHEREAS, Californians and Americans across the country are still recovering from the devastation of the 2008 economic recession and many still feel high levels of economic anxiety surrounding job security and compensation; and
WHEREAS, Recognizing that transitioning off of fossil fuels, while necessary, may cause negative economic consequences, and workers and communities that have borne the burden of fossil fuel extraction and use must have a just and equitable transition to a zero-emissions future; and
WHEREAS, Many Americans do not believe that the economy is designed to work for them and is instead designed to favor wealthy elites; and
WHEREAS, Too often, people are told that they need to make the impossible choice between clean air or water and a job that provides for their families; and
WHEREAS, California leads the nation in climate leadership by moving towards 100 percent clean energy with the passage of The 100 Percent Clean Energy Act of 2018 (Chapter 312 of the Statutes of 2018) and significantly reducing emissions of greenhouse gases with the implementation of the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006 (Division 25.5 (commencing with Section 38500) of the Health and Safety Code) and continues to lead in particular by centering these changes on the needs of environmental justice communities; and
WHEREAS, This leadership has allowed California to oversee unprecedented growth in clean energy industries and job growth and make it home to almost one-third of renewable energy jobs and one out of seven clean energy jobs nationally; and
WHEREAS, California’s new Governor, Gavin Newsom, has recommitted to this climate leadership and has addressed the need for our climate policies to be comprehensive and include thoughtful protections and training opportunities for workers; and
WHEREAS, In his January budget, Governor Newsom proposed $27 million for Apprenticeships for a Green Economy, funding that will be used to create entry-level channels for disadvantaged workers to begin new career paths in the clean energy economy; this includes $5 million for a worker transition fund that will provide for income replacement and retraining for displaced workers; and
WHEREAS, Communities across California have long recognized the need for an unprecedented transformation and mass mobilizations to address our climate crisis and have implemented innovative and creative solutions across the state, including climate emergency declarations and working to create climate emergency mobilization departments, establishing green zones that promote green practices, investing in local food systems and regenerative agricultural practices, and increasing access to renewable energy; and

WHEREAS, Communities whose health and well-being have historically been harmed by carbon-emitting operations have long worked toward reformative measures to create a just transition to a renewable energy-based economy that will improve the health and economic well-being of the most impacted communities and workers—for example, frontline communities played a key role in creating an unprecedented investment that will bring solar rooftops to low-income renters in multifamily housing, which will create jobs, bring energy savings to low-income communities, and reduce reliance on dirty energy; and

WHEREAS, The Green New Deal, a monumental national mobilization plan that will address climate change and economic justice by requiring the United States economy to be neutral with respect to emissions of greenhouse gases within 10 years, while creating pathways to high-income work for all Americans, will build on the New Deal’s example of the scale of investment and innovation required to address the national security threat that the global climate emergency represents; now, therefore, be it

WHEREAS, California has shown that climate action can, and should, be taken with policies that not only reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but also improve air quality, enhance communities, create secure, well-paying jobs, and improve and protect the economy; and
WHEREAS, California’s climate actions that have created community-level benefits include all of the following:
(1) The Renewables Portfolio Standard Program that has increased the percentage of renewable energy in the state’s electricity mix since 2002 and will achieve 60 percent renewables by 2030 and 100 percent clean energy by 2045, resulting in substantial air quality improvements and the creation of new green energy jobs.
(2) The Community Air Protection Program (Assembly Bill 617 of Chapter 136 of the Statutes of 2017) that aims to address local hot spots of air pollution in a community-driven process.
(3) Policies that seek to transform light-, medium-, and heavy-duty vehicles to zero-emission technologies, thereby reducing substantial climate and air pollution emissions from the transportation sector; and
WHEREAS, California’s climate action investments have a strong focus on programs that provide multiple environmental and community benefits, target the state’s most vulnerable communities, and empower residents to identify and develop projects that achieve environmental, health, and economic benefits, including all of the following:
(1) The Energy Corps program that provides job training and career pathways for youth while improving energy efficiency of existing buildings.
(2) The Multifamily Affordable Housing Solar Roofs Program that creates jobs and brings energy savings to low-income consumers.
(3) The Urban Greening and Urban Forestry programs that expand community green spaces, thereby lowering heat island impacts, air and water pollution, and energy costs.
(4) The Transformative Climate Communities Program that makes deep climate investments on community-identified projects that achieve environmental, health, and economic benefits.
(5) The Healthy Soils Initiative that improves farm management to increase soil organic matter while reducing reliance on fossil fuel-based inputs and improving water quality; and
WHEREAS, California’s leadership in climate action has allowed California to oversee unprecedented growth in clean energy industries and job growth and make it home to almost one-third of renewable energy jobs and one in seven clean energy jobs nationally; and
WHEREAS, California has taken the lead nationally in incentivizing the protection and promotion of healthy agricultural soils by not only lowering greenhouse gas emissions, but also by sequestering carbon and bettering air and water quality; and
WHEREAS, California’s climate actions demonstrate that the success of these actions is dependent on those policies being developed with a focus on the impact on frontline communities; this community focus is the heart of the discussion of the Green New Deal in the United States Congress; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly and the Senate of the State of California, jointly, That the Legislature encourages the United States Congress to enact legislation for a Green New Deal that does all of the following: adopt climate policies, including those that might be adopted under the Green New Deal, that build upon California’s programs that have reduced greenhouse gas emissions while improving air and water quality, create new green jobs, and improve disadvantaged communities and that just climate actions offer the nation an opportunity to achieve community-mindful policies that California has successfully adopted while growing its economy; and be it further

(1)Comprehensively addresses our current climate emergency and transforms our economy to one that places the health and wellness of communities at its center, promotes ecological resilience, and restores biodivesity; and

(2)Authentically includes the leadership and voices of underrepresented communities via a process that is transparent, inclusive, and democratic; and

(3)Centers on a “just transition” and places the economic needs and well-being of workers and frontline communities at the forefront, and as we make this immense economic transformation, policies should ensure that vulnerable communities are not again left behind; and

(4)Respects tribal sovereignty; and

(5)Creates family supporting jobs within the expanding green economy; and be it further

Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the President and Vice President of the United States, to the Speaker of the House of Representatives, to the Majority Leader of the Senate, and to each Senator and Representative from California in the Congress of the United States.