Statement By Araceli Ruano, Senior Vice President and Director of CAP Action California.
The Center for American Progress Action Fund commends the voters of California for refusing to accept that a clean environment and good jobs are competing interests. Yesterday, despite the millions of dollars spent by out-of-state oil companies, 61 percent of Californians voted against a cynical initiative designed to repeal one of the most progressive climate change bills in the country. They voted for a green economy.
CAP Action was proud to be part of an unprecedented, positive, bipartisan, multiethnic coalition of leaders and groups that came together to ensure California’s future as a clean energy state. Since 1995, the number of California green businesses has increased 45 percent and green jobs increased 36 percent. California’s clean technology sector received $9 billion of cumulative venture capital investment from 2005-09, including $2.1 billion of investment capital in 2009. California’s voters made sure that the California economy will keep growing in a sustainable way, providing an example to other states and countries around the world.
But our work here is not done. At the same time that Proposition 23 was defeated, yet another oil company-sponsored initiative passed: Proposition 26. In effect, the oil companies said that if we can’t defeat clean energy in California, we will make it harder for state government to hold us accountable when we damage the environment. The message for all of us who are building a clean energy future is that our opponents will not go down without a fight.
CAP Action hopes that progressives around the world will not only celebrate the defeat of Prop 23 but will also keep checking in on California, the front line of the energy economy. Proposition 26 shows that we still need your help. Together we can continue to make California a shining example of how clean energy works.