NO NEW GAS CAMPAIGN
In most Bay Area counties, demand for gasoline and diesel is flat, and expected to fall with the increased adoption of electric alternatives. That’s good news! Yet, gas station operators continue to seek permits for new gas stations, often mega stations which big retail chains, notably Safeway and Costco, are increasingly relying on to generate new revenue. Along with the resulting severe environmental impacts (spills and leaks are 100% inevitable despite industry assertions), the big chains cannibalize revenue from existing suppliers, often local small business owners.
The City of Petaluma was the first to call a halt to incurring permanent environmental damage from new stations using outdated fueling methods when they banned any new gas station permits. You may recall that 350 Bay Area, 350 Marin, and a whole host of other local environmental and environmental justice groups protested a proposed new Costco mega-station in Novato, right on the edge of fragile wetlands. The Novato City Council, acting in the face of their Climate Emergency Resolution approved the permit despite egregious errors and emissions in the initial environmental impact review. Several concerned residents sued the city, insisting on a complete environmental impact report (EIR). Just last week, Judge Chou issued a tentative ruling requiring a full EIR. Stay tuned! This looks like a solid win, but the decision has been appealed and the judge will issue an update on November 18.
STATE PLAN FOR MEETING CLIMATE GOALS
California is updating its State Climate Plan (aka Scoping Plan). 350 Bay Area is pushing hard to make sure the plan achieves California’s goal of 40% GHG reductions by 2030 while protecting disadvantaged communities. Of course, 40% is less than science tells us we need to achieve, but we are skeptical that California is on track to achieve even this modest goal. We produced a detailed analysis of the Plan’s shortcomings and traveled to Sacramento with many environmental justice allies to protest the current draft of the plan on June 23.
ACTION: Make your voice heard by joining APEN in Oakland on July 28 and calling on CARB to help build a future beyond oil and gas.
PROTECTING ROOFTOP SOLAR
California’s Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) recently proposed a set of new rules for rooftop solar. The proposal was pulled due to overwhelmingly negative response to plans to dramatically increase costs and reduce reimbursement rates for energy returned to the grid. 350 Bay Area is one of the leaders of a large coalition of climate, environmental, and clean energy groups and individuals continuing to apply pressure for an improved proposal. 350 Bay Area has legal standing at the CPUC to formally respond to this rulemaking, and we continue to work hard on grassroots organizing to make sure that ratepayers’ voices are heard.
BIG SWINGS GET RESULTS
As you can tell, 350 Bay Area is taking “big swings” to get results as quickly as possible. We know we need to stop burning fossil fuels to ensure a livable climate, and 350 Bay Area is creating tangible steps to get there.
Our people power is our biggest asset: from the hundreds of volunteers to the thousands who sign petitions and make calls to elected officials; and most importantly, to the individual donors like you who primarily fund this work. We have a truly dedicated, smart, and passionate team.
Take a “BIG Swing” by making a donation today! Please give what you can to get results with 350 Bay Area; donate with the enclosed envelope or online at: www.350bayarea.org/donate
Executive Director, 350 Bay Area
PS We hope to see you at the Summer Picnic on August 20th! There will be snacks, live music and more. RSVP here!