Jul 082017
 
2018 Climate Action Summit To Take Place In San Francisco

Photo property of PBS News Hour

California Governor Brown Announces Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco in September 2018

On July 6th on the eve of the G20 Summit, California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. announced via video message at the Global Citizen Festival in Hamburg, Germany that the State of California will convene the world’s climate leaders in San Francisco, California in September 2018 for the Global Climate Action Summit.

“It’s up to you and it’s up to me and tens of millions of other people to get it together to roll back the forces of carbonization and join together to combat the existential threat of climate change. That is why we’re having the Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, September 2018,” said Governor Brown in his remarks. “President Trump is trying to get out of the Paris Agreement, but he doesn’t speak for the rest of America. We in California and in states all across America believe it’s time to act, it’s time to join together and that’s why at this Climate Action Summit we’re going to get it done.”

The Governor spoke via video message during the final hour of the Global Citizen Festival in Hamburg, Germany and was introduced by Christiana Figueres, former United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Executive Secretary and currently the convener of Mission 2020 and Global Ambassador for the Under2 Coalition. The Global Citizen Festival was attended by thousands of people and featured remarks from Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Norway’s Prime Minister Erna Solberg and Argentina’s President Mauricio Macri and performances from Coldplay, Shakira, Pharrell Williams, Ellie Goulding and others.

California will convene representatives from subnational governments, businesses, investors and civil society at the Global Climate Action Summit to demonstrate the groundswell of innovative, ambitious climate action from leaders around the world, highlight the economic and environmental transition already underway and spur deeper commitment from all parties, including national governments.

Today’s announcement is the product of months of discussions between the Governor and Christiana Figueres, who, following the conclusion of the successful UN Climate Change Conference in Paris, encouraged the Governor to host a summit in 2018 in California to drive further climate action. Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León has also been a key partner and recently joined other state Senators to urge the Governor to convene the world’s climate leaders in California.

“The growing threat of climate change demands an immediate and unified global response,” said Senate Leader Kevin de León. “California remains committed to a clean energy future and we welcome the responsibility to lead on America’s behalf. My colleagues in the Senate appreciate Governor Brown agreeing to hold this global summit and look forward to working with him to welcome our partners from around the world.”

The summit, which will be held ahead of the 24th United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP 24), will mark the first time a U.S. state has hosted an international climate change conference with the direct goal of supporting the Paris Agreement.

Governor Brown’s complete remarks are below:

“Hello, Hamburg. I’m Governor Jerry Brown. Greetings from California.

Look, it’s up to you and it’s up to me and tens of millions of other people to get it together to roll back the forces of carbonization and join together to combat the existential threat of climate change. That’s why we’re having the Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, September 2018.

Come join us – entrepreneurs, singers, musicians, mathematicians, professors, students – we need people that represent the whole world because this is about the whole world and the people who live here. We have to do something and we can do it. That’s why we want to join together in this Climate Action Summit in 2018 in San Francisco.

Yes, I know President Trump is trying to get out of the Paris Agreement, but he doesn’t speak for the rest of America. We in California and in states all across America believe it’s time to act, it’s time to join together and that’s why at this Climate Action Summit we’re going to get it done.

So, see you there. Thanks.”

The Governor’s video message and additional information regarding the summit can be found at: https://globalclimateactionsummit.org/.

 

 

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Apr 082017
 

California Road Repair Approved: We’ll Pay

The Road Repair and Accountability Act was introduced and signed just last week. In the words of League Executive Director Carolyn Coleman: “Californians are sick and tired of driving on bad roads and we are all paying the cost of disrepair, traffic congestion and unsafe roads, bridges and other transportation infrastructure.”

The Road Repair and Accountability Act has been voted on and approved by the California Legislature in one week of being signed by California Governor Brown.

Los Angeles Mayor Garcetti issued a statement following the act’s approval:
“Today’s billion-dollar commitment by the California legislature will deliver better roads, bridges and transportation infrastructure from one end of the state to the other. Here in Los Angeles, we will be able to repave our roads and give our residents a smoother ride on their daily commute and on their drives to see the people and places they love, with nearly $100 million invested annually into our local streets. None of this would have been possible without the persistence and vision of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr., Senate President pro Tem Kevin de León, Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, Senator Jim Beall, and Assemblymember Jim Frazier. Their years of hard work and determination will serve generations to come.”

The Road Repair and Accountability Act is good news for California’s roads, commuters and visitors. Its cost however seems to have been passed in its entirety to us and we’re not talking about chump change but $5.2 billion a year for 10 years. We’ll have to cough it up at the DMV (vehicle registration and renewal fees, new usage fees for driving electric and hybrid vehicles, etc.) and at the gas pump.

Considering the fact that a significant segment of Los Angeles population still didn’t recover from the latest economic slump, The Road Repair and Accountability Act is a great recipe for fixing the roads and losing weight, at the same time. It will compound financial hardship of many low income families in Los Angeles.

Read more about The Road Repair and Accountability Act

Anything L.A. Liberal Magazine’s Editor, E. Elrich

 

 

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Feb 132017
 
Emergency Order For Oroville Dam Area

Photo property of PBS.org

Governor Brown Issues Emergency Order to Help Response to Situation at Oroville Dam

 

UPDATE: Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. issued the following statement today (02/14/17) after the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) approved both recent gubernatorial requests for federal assistance – one to support the response to the situation at Oroville Dam and the other to help with the impacts of January storms:

“I want to thank FEMA for moving quickly to approve our requests. This federal aid will get money and resources where it’s needed most.”

Yesterday, Governor Brown met with emergency response officials and sent a letter to the President and FEMA requesting a Presidential Emergency Declaration for Direct Federal Assistance to support the communities impacted by the situation at the Oroville Dam’s emergency spillway. Separately, last Friday, Governor Brown requested a Presidential Major Disaster Declaration for the state to bolster ongoing state and local recovery efforts following January storms that caused additional flooding, mudslides, erosion, power outages and damage to critical infrastructure across California.

On Sunday, Governor Brown declared a state of emergency to bolster the state’s response to the situation in Oroville and support local evacuations. The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services has also activated the State Operations Center in Mather, California to its highest level and is coordinating with personnel at the Incident Command Post in Oroville, California and with other local, state and federal emergency response officials to address all emergency management needs.

*

The Oroville Dam in Northern California is filled to capacity by the recent wave of rain storms. Due to the weight of the water as well as the age and condition of the dam, a hole has developed in the auxiliary spillway of the reservoir making it risky to attempt lowering water levels. (The hole was discovered on Sunday 02/12/17, a day after the spillway was used for the first time.)

Without the ability to control water levels the Dam is at risk of overflowing and releasing massive amounts of water from Lake Oroville into the Feather River flooding widespread areas endangering lives and property.

The situation caused Governor Brown to issue immediate evacuation order for flood threatened communities. National Weather Service also urged residents to evacuate. Tens of thousands have been evacuated from towns below the Oroville Dam in Yuba, Butte and Sutter counties. (Some sources put the number at 100,000.) Seven Yuba area Sikh Temples have offered temporary housing to evacuees.

The Governor put the entire 23,000 member strong California National Guard on alert should the feared disaster occur.

As of Monday morning, the threat appears to be less severe. There are plans to fill the hole with rocks which would make the emergency spillway functional – and capable of releasing excess water at a measured rate – again.

*

Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. issued an emergency order on Sunday 02/12/17 to bolster the state’s response to the situation at the Oroville Dam’s auxiliary spillway and support subsequent local evacuations.

“I’ve been in close contact with emergency personnel managing the situation in Oroville throughout the weekend and it’s clear the circumstances are complex and rapidly changing,” said Governor Brown. “I want to thank local and state law enforcement for leading evacuation efforts and doing their part to keep residents safe. The state is directing all necessary personnel and resources to deal with this very serious situation.”

The Governor’s Office of Emergency Services has activated the State Operations Center in Mather, California to its highest level and is coordinating with personnel at the Incident Command Post in Oroville, California and with other local, state and federal emergency response officials to address all emergency management, evacuation and mutual aid needs.

1. All citizens should heed the advice of emergency officials with regard to this emergency in order to protect their safety.

2. All agencies of the state government utilize and employ state personnel, equipment, and facilities for the performance of any and all activities consistent with the direction of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services and the State Emergency Plan.

3. As necessary to assist local governments and for the protection of public health and the environment, state agencies shall enter into contracts to arrange for the procurement of materials, goods, and services necessary to quickly remove dangerous debris, repair damaged resources, and restore and protect the impacted watershed. Applicable provisions of the Government Code and the Public Contract Code, including but not limited to travel, advertising, and competitive bidding requirements, are suspended to the extent necessary to address the effects of this flooding.

4. The California National Guard shall mobilize under California Military and Veterans Code section 146 to support disaster response and relief efforts and coordinate with all relevant state agencies, including the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services, and all relevant state and local emergency responders and law enforcement within the impacted areas. Pursuant to section 147 of the California Military and Veterans Code, any and all provisions of Division 2 of the Military and Veterans Code or other laws of the State which require advertisement for bids for purchases of supplies or employment of services are suspended to the extent necessary to address the effects of this flooding.

5. In order to expedite response and recovery, Division 13 (commencing with section 21000) of the Public Resources Code and regulations adopted pursuant to that Division are hereby suspended.

6. The Office of Emergency Services shall provide assistance to Butte, Sutter and Yuba Counties, as appropriate, under the authority of the California Disaster Assistance Act, California Government Code section 8680 et seq. and California Code of Regulations, title 19, section 2900 et seq.

I FURTHER DIRECT that as soon as hereafter possible, this proclamation be filed in the Office of the Secretary of State and that widespread publicity and notice be given of this proclamation.

 

 

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