BayCAP Resolution Presented to BAAQMD May 9, 2013
Thursday, May 9th was a big day for our BayCAP team. After months of our work and preparation, around 20 of us filled the room at the Climate Protection Committee meeting of the BAAQMD. We officially presented our Resolution, and requested that the Committee act on their mission by adopting an aggressive Climate Action Plan by July 2014 to reduce Bay Area greenhouse gas emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050.
Six of us presented it, and several others spoke in support during the General Comments period. Taylor started by thanking the Committee for their work in the past, and introduced our team and the resolution. Then Aaron, Floyd, Kathy, and Patrick took turns reading sections of the Resolution aloud, from beginning to end. Laura finished up with a strong emotional summary.
We were joined by Bay Area activists working to stop Keystone XL and on other climate-related and environmental justice causes. Kirsten Schwind and Corinne Van Hook of Bay Localize spoke movingly and effectively in support of the Resolution and the importance of these issues to all Bay Area communities.
The resolution was well received, and at the end of the meeting, Chairman Avalos held it up and instructed staff to review and work with it. He seems to be a strong supporter.
We now begin lobbying all the committee members to build support for our Resolution, and for its passage and implementation. We are also seeking to support Chairperson Avalos' efforts to pass a resolution against the Keystone XL pipeline. Thanks to everyone who helped in this important effort.
Taylor Hawke kicks off the BayCAP presentation.
After the meeting, from left to right: Kathy Kemp, Patrick Jacobs, Floyd Smith, Janet Stromberg, Laura Galligan, Taylor Hawke, Aaron Reaven
click image to view slide show
The Bay Climate Action Plan (BayCAP) campaign is lobbying the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to
The San Francisco Bay Area is equivalent to a wealthy small nation in terms of population, the level of GHG emissions and the size of it's economy. Our region emits 100 millions tons per year of GHGs. This is equivalent to the emissions of nations such as Sweden, Israel, Ireland and Portugal. 80% below 1990 emissions would be 17.6 million tons per year.
The primary cause of global warming is the burning of fossil fuels. The Bay Area's biggest export is refined product from the five oil refineries located in Contra Costa and Solano counties. Not only are we emitting GHGs at the level of a small developed nation, we are also exporting emissions around the globe, including refinery products exported to China that would be illegal to burn in California.
State law gives California's 35 air districts, including BAAQMD, primary responsibility for control of air pollution, including greenhouse gases (GHGs) from virtually all non-vehicular sources. Plus, air districts are authorized to set stricter standards than those established by either California or the federal government. About 60% of Bay Area GHG emissions are non-vehicular.
California's Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32) aims to reduce GHGs to 1990 levels by 2020. It's a start, but not nearly enough. Federal action is stalled out, or even going backwards by encouraging more drilling. BAAQMD, covering the nine county Bay Area, has the power to take action where the State and the federal have lagged.
California Baseline and GHG Emission Targets
Diagram from From "The Technology Path to Deep Greenhouse Gas Emissions Cuts by 2050: The Pivotal Role of Electricity" Science 6 January 2012
We petition the Air District to use its authority to:
- Declare that catastrophic climate disruption is an escalating emergency
- Act on its mission by adopting aggressive programs by July 2014 to reduce Bay Area greenhouse gas emissions to 80% below 1990 levels by 2050.
- Mission "to protect and improve public health, air quality and the global climate" and one of its
- Core Values: "Leadership—The Air District will be at the forefront of air quality improvement and will pioneer new strategies to achieve healthy air and protect the climate."
Read the RESOLUTION we are asking the BAAQMD Board to adopt.
Check out our SLIDE SHOW presentation.
Join our campaign. We're talking to BAAQMD Board members, circulating our petition and getting organizational endorsements. Sign up to VOLUNTEER.
See 350 Bay Area Events for our next meeting date.