Climate Justice Activists To Protest Governor’s Appearance At New York Times Climate Tech Summit

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Climate Justice Activists To Protest Governor’s Appearance At New York Times Climate Tech Summit


November 30, 2017

Climate justice activists to protest Governor’s appearance at New York Times Climate Tech Summit

According to a news advisory from Brown’s Office, the summit “brings together policymakers and leaders from key industries to examine the technology, innovation and financing needed to help keep the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius.”

Brown will speak at approximately 7:30 p.m. today, November 29, at the City View at Metreon, 135 4th St., San Francisco, CA 94103

The Governor’s Office said the event “is open to registered guests and credentialed media only.”

Before he speaks, climate justice activists will hold their protest against Brown from 4:30 – 6 pm at the Mission Street entrance to the Metreon. Daniel Gustavo Ilario, a member of Idle No More SF Bay, an indigenous women-led climate justice organization that confronted Brown on his false climate policies in Bonn, will speak at the demonstration.

While in Bonn, Germany for the United Nations climate talks, Brown was challenged by indigenous and frontline community advocates to keep fossil fuels in the ground, to which he responded, “Let’s put you in the ground.”

“In Bonn, as a part of an indigenous delegation, we stood up and demanded that Governor Jerry Brown stop fracking in California and stop refinery expansions which cause significant negative health effects such as respiratory problems, birth defects, leukemia and cancers,” said Illario. “Governor Brown is no climate hero. He takes millions from the oil industry and then allows fossil fuel lobbyists to write legislation.”

“ We do not have time for half measures and false solutions like California’s Cap and Trade program. We stand in solidarity today because it is our responsibility to provide a livable future for generations to come. Instead of allowing the oil and gas industry to create policy that kicks the can down the road,  we need brave leaders and legislation that implement a just transition from a destructive, extractive economy to a regenerative one that respects the sacred system of life,” said Illario.

“Governor Jerry Brown cares more about the fossil fuel industry’s contributions to his Party than the people being impacted by the toxins they release in our communities,” said Pennie Opal Plant of Idle No More SF Bay, “while he panders to big oil money we suffer. He has lost his heart for the people he is supposed to represent.”

Catherine Garoupa White, coalition coordinator for Californians Against Fracking noted that protesters in Bonn pointed to California’s failure to address fossil fuel production as the “glaring weakness” in the state’s climate action plan.

She said “the science is clear” that the majority of fossil fuel reserves must stay in the ground to stave off “devastating climate change.” She pointed out that the state  is currently the third-largest oil-producing state, producing millions of barrels per year of some of the most carbon-intensive crude in the world.

“The idea that climate progress can be proclaimed and lauded without dealing aggressively with the core mechanism of climate change is reckless,” said Garoupa White. “By starting with tackling the most harmfulpractices of the oil and gas industry, California would provide a model and inspiration for otherstates and countries to follow. Protesters on Wednesday will be there to remind Governor Brownthat real climate leaders keep fossil fuels in the ground.”

While Brown speaks often at climate conferences around the globes, he has in fact been a big advocate for expanding fracking and oil drilling in California. Brown received over $9.8 million in contributions from oil, gas and utility companies, often within days of winning big political favors, according to Consumer Watchdog’s “Brown’s Dirty Hands” report released in August 2016.

“The timing of energy industry donations around important legislation and key pro-industry amendments, as well as key regulatory decisions in which Brown personally intervened, raises troubling questions about whether quid pro quos are routine for this administration,” said consumer advocate Liza Tucker, report author. “While Brown paints himself as a foe of fossil fuels, his Administration promoted reckless oil drilling, burning dirty natural gas to make electricity, and used old hands from industry and government, placed in key regulatory positions, to protect the fossil fuel-reliant energy industry.”

The report claims that twenty-six energy companies including the state’s three major investor-owned utilities, Occidental, Chevron, and NRG—all with business before the state—donated $9.8 million to Jerry Brown’s campaigns, causes, and initiatives, and to the California Democratic Party since he ran for Governor. You can download the report here:

Background: Big Oil is California’s biggest corporate lobby.

 The oil industry in the single largest corporate lobby in Sacramento — and dominates spending on lobbying every legislative session. Every bill opposed by the oil industry with the exception of one has failed to pass out of the Legislature over the past three years, due to the gusher of Big Oil lobbying money.

The oil industry spent more on lobbying in California, $16,360,618, in the first six months of 2017 than was spent by the industry in all of 2016, $16.0 million.  

This translates to an average of $2.7 million per month – $90,000 per day – since Jan. 1, 2017, according to a report compiled and written by William Barrett of the Lung Association in California. Over the past ten years, oil lobbying in California has topped $150 million.

Chevron ranks #1 among all lobbyist spenders in the current session with $7.1 million spent in first six months of 2017, compared to $3 million total in 2016.

Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), normally the largest spender of all lobbying organizations, was the 2nd overall spender in the first two quarters of 2017 with $3.9 million spent. 

For more information, go to:

Media/Press Contacts:

David Braun, (917) 514-0700, [email protected]

Catherine Garoupa White, (559) 232-1698, [email protected]

Consumer Watchdog
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