Let Us Now Murder AB 2145 Before It Kills Community Choice Power

NO2145-Logo-JPGWhen we last wrote about AB 2145 it was after a trip to Sacramento to speak out against the bill at the Senate Energy Committee hearing on it.  We told the bill’s author, Assemblyman Stephen Bradford that we wanted to bring Community Choice Power to the South Bay, especially cities like Inglewood and Gardena, where lowering electricity bills will have a big impact on homeowners and business owners.  We went home that day happy that the bill’s opt in provision had been removed.

But as it turns out we shouldn’t have been so pleased because AB 2145 was still alive and in its revised form now had three different ways to kill the current Community Choice programs in Marin County and Sonoma County, and to make sure no new Community Choice Power programs, like our own embryonic South Bay Clean Power efforts, can possibly succeed.

How does it do that?  Pretty simply -

Continue reading

Bradford: Twelve Years A Failure – His Reason To Kill CCAs

South Bay Gets More Done In 3 Months Than SCE’s Former Flack Got Done in a Dozen As A City Councilman in Gardena

What a unique concept.  First admit what a failure you were in your own personal efforts of launching a Community Choice power program where you live.  Then ignore or lie about the progress made by so many outside your community.  And finally, try to kill the Community Choice power program for anyone else with the skills and abilities to do what you are not capable of.

That’s been the strategy of SCE’s man-on-the inside of the California State Assembly, Steven Bradford, who says he “resents the implications” that he is carrying water for his former employers and current campaign contributors.  

Mock outrage by bamboozlers and scoundrels upon getting called out for their attempts at the old Okey-Doke is a classic loser technique.  Good old Foghorn Leghorn in the old cartoons couldn’t have sounded any less convincing. Especially after being puppet mastered all hearing long by the IBEW’s union boss who whispered in his ear to feed him talking points.

It was a sad display of how laws get made in Sacramento and a cynical confirmation of all your worst fears about corrupt, dishonest, egocentric politicians who mean us more harm than good.

Fortunately the people also had a chance to speak: Continue reading

Ted Lieu To The Rescue! Heroic Climate Champion Saves Community Choice Aggregation.

IMG_1981 My politically connected friends (who prefer to remain nameless) advise me to accept State Senator Ted Lieu as he is and be happy for his strong environmental record.  

They tell me to stop wishing he was somebody else and that I’m dreaming if I think he’s ever going to change into the dynamo that I fantasize about.  

And I get that.  You go to climate battle with the Ted Lieu you have, not the Ted Lieu you wished you had. Joe St Rocke

Yet still… I couldn’t stop thinking about it Wednesday night at St. Rocke’s in Hermosa Beach where I had gone to get away from it all and rock out to Jimmy Vaughan and his band.  Luckily that totally did the trick as I downed one quadruple The Reverend after another, locking into the groove.  

That night I slept like Rip Van Winkle himself, dead to the world and dreaming the vivid-as-life dreams that The Reverend, and the music, and moment made possible.  

And it all suddenly became clear to me. LieuWaxman__disclaimer_(1)Suddenly we were at The Crossroads as Ted Lieu runs for Henry Waxman’s seat in the United States Congress.   Waxman has been our heroic climate champion for many years now and is retiring.  New, fresh, young, energetic blood is needed from a new champion at this special spot on the climate timeline – and Ted Lieu has now seized his moment and become that champion.

Everything he’s done in life has led to this unique time and place. And I could see Ted, bigger than life, looking strong, and determined and unstoppable.  He was downright dynamic.

And the issue that Ted grabbed and commanded and was using to transform himself into a climate legend was Community Choice Aggregation.   It was a natural for Ted and he knew it.  

And right before my eyes Ted was making it his own and becoming positively evangelical about it.  Continue reading

Wayne Powell, Dudley Do Right For All The Right Reasons

Wayne

Your Friendly Neighborhood Greenius (white shirt) talks to Manhattan Beach Councilman Wayne Powell (center) and Councilman Mark Burton at the 2014 Manhattan Beach Earth Day Celebration.

A lot of my political friends are still suffering from election night hangovers this Throwback Thursday.  Their heads continue to pound, they’re still experiencing dry mouth and disorientation.

Think of today’s post as a hangover cure.

As we learned in my last Greenius “Al Muratsuchi Kills Community Choice Finds Out He Was Duped & Calls Me To Apologize” everyone makes mistakes.  Some are forgotten, some are cast in titanium, forged forever.

One of the biggest mistakes your friendly neighborhood Greenius made was back in the day when I first met Wayne Powell in 2009.  He was running for Manhattan Beach City Council and I wrote something snarky about Wayne.  It was flippant and critical, and like a lot of what I’ve written, completely forgettable the moment after you finished reading the sentence.  But not to Wayne.

Which is understandable, for who among us doesn’t remember the cutting comment far longer than any compliment?  As the wise man once said, “One F-you wipes out a thousand attaboys.”  True dat.

And no surprise to anyone who knows Wayne Powell, I was completely wrong about him.  I’ve had it proven to me time after time after time over the last five years as Councilman Powell stood up strong on bicycle issues, on health issues, on climate issues, on water issues, on fossil fuel issues, on safety issues.  On Tuesday he did it again on helping to pass Manhattan Beach’s new ban on smoking citywide. Continue reading

Al Muratsuchi Votes To Kill Community Choice Then Finds Out He Was Duped & Calls Me To Apologize

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This political primary season just keeps getting weirder and weirder.

Al Muratsuchi

Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, representing the 66th District in California explains as State Controller, John Chiang listens at the Lunquist Mansion on the Palos Verdes Peninsula during a recent fundraiser (photo by Joe Galliani)

Imagine my surprise on Friday afternoon when my cell phone rang and it was Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi on the line calling to tell me he had made a big mistake and that he was sorry.  

He wanted me to know that he really regretted his YES vote two days earlier for AB 2145, the CAA Killer bill, which – Surprise! – was written by the big utilities to try and kill Community Choice Aggregation.  

Al said he had been lied to about what the bill really says and does and that he didn’t really know anything about CCAs until a few weeks ago.  He again said he was sorry, that he had dropped the ball on this one and that he was now going to lobby State Senator Ted Lieu to make sure the State Senate didn’t make the same mistake.  What could I say? Al sounded sincere and remorseful… Continue reading

Wendy Greuel Our Best Bet To Get To 100% Renewable Energy In Time

hero joe

Joe Galliani in Keep Hermosa Hermosa hat receiving his 2014 Environmental Hero Award from the City of Manhattan Beach and V.O.I.C.E. with Sona Kalapura Coffee, Manhattan Beach Mayor Amy Howorth, State Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi, Kaye Gagnon of V.O.I.C.E and Councilman Wayne Powell.

To those of you who know me best and have been reading Creative Greenius since we started publishing in October 2007 it seems pretty silly that any candidate for elected office would seek my endorsement or think that it would do more good than harm.

And you would think that would be especially true for anyone running to become our United States representative from this 33rd Congressional District – the person who will be following the great Henry Waxman in that position.

But in fact, both Wendy Greuel and Marianne Williamson have each reached out to me and I have taken their asks seriously and with more thoughtfulness than usual given the crossroads we find ourselves at climate wise. Without Henry Waxman as our Representative we lose a giant.

I’ve spent time talking with Marianne Williamson’s policy advisor over the last couple of weeks and just this Wednesday I had the pleasure of meeting with Marianne one-on-one for about 90 minutes at my own spiritual sanctuary, our beloved South Coast Botanic Garden on a spectacular summer-like morning.        Continue reading

Wendy Greuel Gains Green Ground in South Bay L.A. – Stands Up & Speaks Out To Keep Hermosa Hermosa

beach wendyYour friendly neighborhood Greenius has been waiting for awhile now to see which of the candidates for Henry Waxman’s 33rd District seat was going to step up environmentally.  Today that person turned out to be Wendy Greuel.

My good friend, Dency Nelson, tells me Ted Lieu was already that guy and that Ted’s strong record speaks for itself.  And it’s true that Ted has come out against fracking and is signing on to Holly Mitchell’s strong anti-fracking bill and reportedly has called “climate change” his number one priority.  And yet…

IMG_2204I’m just not feeling Ted Lieu.  I never have in the 21 years I’ve lived in Torrance, which is where Ted is from and started on his road to higher and higher office.  I’ve never personally witnessed any passion out of Ted or felt that he had the fire in his belly on the environment or was any kind of climate action hero.  

Maybe I’m wrong about Ted, like I was several years ago about then Manhattan Beach City Council Candidate, Wayne Powell, who I didn’t think was much of an environmentalist the first time I met him, but who has turned out to be the most reliable and thoughtful issue guy on the Manhattan Beach City Council. Continue reading

Light Up Your Future At The Manhattan Beach Pier 8pm Saturday March 29

MB2025 Pier flier FINAL hi rezSome cities just turn out the lights for an hour to celebrate Earth Hour.  But not Manhattan Beach which is launching its MB2025 vision of a 100% renewably energy powered city by 2025 at a special forum in the late afternoon and then filling the world famous Manhattan Beach pier with hundreds of people for Earth Hour to demonstrate their support for clean energy and their ability to Light Up Your Future.  Hosted by the Mayor and City Council of Manhattan Beach and featuring an uplifting live music performance from the Hawaiian ukulele recording group Pihemanu, this event will be live streamed to a worldwide on-line audience.  The world leader in LED lighting, LEDtronics has generously donated 500 LED candles and holders. Continue reading

A Few Words on Eco Terrorists, Cowards and Courage

photo 1Last night at the Hermosa Beach City Council meeting I heard an ignorant little man reference my favorite Edward Abbey book, “The Monkey Wrench Gang,” which I read the year it came out – in 1975 as a senior in high school.

It’s true. I am that young.

51Pkf5BUOHL._SY344_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_BO1,204,203,200_The little man cited the book to accuse a friend of mine of being an “eco terrorist” because he had used the term “monkey wrench” on his Facebook page.

The little man made himself look even smaller with a Rush Limbaugh styled rant. But the whole time he was doing so he ironically missed calling out the big time “eco terrorists” sitting just a few feet away from him.

I’m talking about the people who work for and represent E&B oil. The people whose business model is to wreck the ecology and the climate and profit from it.

These are the people who in the face of science that says we must transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy or destroy the futures of our children and all who come after them, still want to drill for oil that should never be burned.

Even when we reach the limit of our carbon budget, when burning any more oil, coal or gas will push global temperatures beyond 2 degrees celsius, the E&B business model is to harvest more oil so that it can be burned as fuel.

No foreign terrorist could ever do us more harm.

E&B has no limit on the amount of their product they think it’s safe to burn. There is no limit to the amount of pollution they are willing to cause. No maximum amount of CO2 and other greenhouse gases their product will be allowed to produce.

carbon-budget

The graph on the right is the amount of carbon eco terrorists intend to burn.

Even if you are willing to support that kind of world class level of eco terrorism for the profit of Hermosa Beach, you are still going to be terrorized by E&B’s promises of revenues to come – because they cannot deliver on them.

E&B won’t tell you, nor will their paid shills at the American Petroleum Institute or the other dirty fuel groups they belong to, but the climate science dictates that they will have to keep 60%-80% of their reserves unburned and not used as fuel.

When this happens sometime in the next 10 years, E&B will be worth 60% to 80% less as a company.

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That means the pie in the sky projections of tens and hundreds of millions of dollars of income from E&B’s Hermosa Beach oil operations will be worth as much as that coupon for cigarettes you thought you’d use at CVS.


And one last thought – on the subject of cowardice, which E&B has introduced into the conversation.  

There are no bigger cowards then the people who work for the oil, coal and gas industries.

They know full well what the climate models predict based on a continued burning of their product.  

vichy-surrender (1)They know that the work they do contributes every day to the wrecking of our climate and all the hell and high water that goes with that.

Yet they are too cowardly and morally weak to do the right thing. They are so cowardly that they lie about the impacts of their business practices and they help finance the climate change denier movement.

They are the Vichy French of our time and they are proud of themselves for being so.

On the other hand – to buck the billions of dollars from the rouge and reckless fossil fuel industry, to risk the wrath of their law suits, their intimidation tactics and their attempts at character assassination takes real courage.  The kind that brave people who run towards the danger have.

In fact, the most patriotic Americans today are those who despite the greatest of odds, in the face of what may already be runaway climate change, are willing to spend their time and energy to fight for our children’s future.

I’m talking about heroes like climate scientist Michael E. Mann, the scientist best known for his “Hockey Stick” and for having his emails hacked in a failed attempt to smear him and try to disprove the science.

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For his service, Dr. Mann was attacked and threatened and forced to file a defamation of character lawsuit against the powerful right wing, pro-oil National Review. That’s what real courage looks like.

It doesn’t take any courage to sell your soul and become a sycophant and a shill for the world’s biggest, most powerful and richest industry in exchange for dollars in your own pocket.

There’s nothing patriotic, or noble or decent in that choice. It’s sad and pathetic and shameful.

And we certainly won’t be taking any value lessons from the people whose work is selling out their own children’s better future.

But I’m more than happy to give them one:

If it is wrong to wreck the climate then it is wrong to profit from it.

What Does Henry Waxman Know About Climate That Made Him Quit?

Congressman Henry Waxman receiving environmntal award at 2013 Earth Day Celebration, Manhattan Beach (c) Joe Galliani

Congressman Henry Waxman receiving environmental award at 2013 Earth Day Celebration, Manhattan Beach (c) Joe Galliani

When the one guy in all of Congress who understands the latest science on climate change best, the guy who has the most experience and knowledge of the environment and how to get life-changing legislation passed like the clean air act, the clean water act, the laws that forced our government to acknowledge AIDS, not to mention having kicked the tobacco industry’s ass – when that guy announces he’s sticking a fork in it and he’s done – then you have to ask yourself this question -

What does Henry Waxman know about what’s coming next and what our government intends to do about it that made him throw in the towel and quit?

If he thought he had passed the carbon tax or climate bill torch to someone else he was confident would bring it across the finish line he would have said so.

If he thought we were already in great shape and had the plans in place to prevent or respond to the worst of what’s coming he would have mentioned that too.

I don’t think it’s any coincidence at all that Waxman’s announcement came during the same week as the President’s decidedly weak on climate SOTU or the same week the State Department’s report on the XL pipeline’s impact on climate was released.  There are no coincidences when a 20 term Congressmen picks his adios announcement day.

Congressman Waxman in a Tesla, contemplating how fast he could drive away from DC in one of these EVs. (c) Joe Galliani

Congressman Waxman with 66 District Assemblyman Al Muratuschi, in a Tesla Roadster, contemplating how fast he could drive away from DC in one of these EVs. (c) Joe Galliani

I think Henry called “No mas!” because he knows the politics has terminally trumped the science and that there will be no adequate response on climate from our United States government – either from the Congress or from the White House which gave lip service to Waxman but not the kind of support he needed – the kind Obama is happy to approve if it means killing Osama Bin Laden, but not if it means killing his relationship with the fossil fuel industry.

Waxman knows that the Canadian tar sands are game over for the climate. He knows that fracking California just helps put the unneeded nail in the coffin and that our current national orgy of oil production is the climate’s Sodom and Gomorrah.

Waxman knows that the White House isn’t listening to Michael Mann or James Hanson – let alone Al Gore or Bill McKibben. The same way they wouldn’t listen to Steven Chu after they picked him to be their energy expert.

How many times do they have to piss on your leg while telling you it’s raining before you get it?

I think Henry got it and now he won’t be taking it any more.

If I’m wrong then you’ll see Waxman take the lead in the climate hawk community and come out swinging on climate the day his term ends.  If that happens I’ll welcome it and work side by side with him.  350.org would be a good place for him to land.  Plenty of heavy lifting left to do, Henry.

But personally I think at age 74 Henry’s had it.  He doesn’t see any signs that we’re going to go Fossil Free and 100% Renewable Energy in time to prevent a 2+ degree rise in global temperatures and the destiny that brings with it.  And that absence of hope comes from a career in DC and being able to smell the crazy juice being guzzled down by the corporate right and their shameless suckups and sycophants.  

Fair enough, Henry.  Go in peace.  But your friendly neighborhood Greenuis still has plenty of juju and mojo to keep me going for whatever comes next.  I’m in it till I see how it all ends.  

And I’m ALL in.