FROM Kathryn Phillips
Does Cleaning the Air Mean Curbing Your Driving? State Senate Bill 350 would increase the amount of electricity generated by renewable energy sources, including wind and solar. It would also reduce the petroleum content used by motor vehicles by 50% in the next 15 years. Supported by Governor Brown and written by Senate leader Kevin de León, it easily passed the upper house. Now it's in trouble in the Assembly. Here's part of a TV ad from the California Drivers' Allliance, which is funded by the Western States Petroleum Association.
Fast Train, Budget Drain More than five years ago, voters in California overwhelmingly approved a ballot measure to approve selling bonds for a groundbreaking high-speed rail project. Legal woes have stalled funding for the train, and now the governor wants to help pay for it with proceeds from the state's cap-and-trade law. However, not everybody’s on board. Support for a bullet train has waned, to the point that more people now want the project halted, than to go on.
California Restarts the Hydrogen Highway There are about 300 hydrogen-powered automobiles on California roads and highways. Governor Brown’s Air Resources Board wanted oil companies to build hydrogen fueling stations for the cars of the future. The oil companies resisted and threatened to sue, asking why they should pay for their own demise. So, the Governor has signed into law a requirement that 20 million dollars a year be taken from current auto-registration fees. Catherine Dunwoody is Executive Director of the California Fuel Cell Partnership . Kathryn Phillips is the director of the Sierra Club of California .
Will Fracking Tarnish the Golden State? Hydraulic fracturing, called "fracking," has created outrage in Pennsylvania and led to regulations in New York state. The oil-drilling practice is widespread in Southern California, and bills for a moratorium or an outright ban have been killed in Sacramento. A measure to provide increased regulation is still alive, but even environmental groups are divided.
How Green Is Governor Jerry Brown? Jerry Brown's famous advice to politicians is, "Paddle a little on the left, paddle a little on the right and keep on going right down the middle." It sounds practical enough but, put into action, it’s a formula that can upset the expectations of an elected official’s supporters. During his third term as Governor, Brown has been preaching about climate change. But, he's also been paddling on the other side.
A New York Times op-ed on climate change sparks uproar The New York Times is embroiled in a public furor over a new columnist, who wrote that scientific uncertainty is reason for debate about climate change. Many conservatives are delighted. Is America's leading liberal newspaper fostering climate denial? This is the latest in our series, "The Emotional States of America."
Trump's Russia ties intensify with Comey firing Acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe contradicted the Trump White House today, insisting the Bureau had not lost faith in former Director James Comey. He promised to notify the committee of any interference into investigation of the Trump campaign's contacts with Vladimir Putin's Russia. What do we know about those contacts… and how they relate to Trump's business interests and those of his family?
Trump fires FBI Director James Comey Vice President Mike Pence took the Administration's lead today in explaining why the President fired the Head of the FBI, saying, "The president made the right decision at the right time." Trump's action is being compared to the so-called "Saturday Night Massacre" that led to President Richard Nixon's resignation in 1973.
Trump's 'America First' goes missing abroad In the Middle East, President Trump is changing some policies of the Obama Administration—and reversing his own campaign attacks on Islam as a religion that "hates us." We hear about his visit to Saudi Arabia and what's at stake for the rest of his foreign excursion.