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Green Jobs or Asthma? San Diego CEOs Organize to Defeat Prop 23

3p Contributor | Friday October 29th, 2010 | 7 Comments

By Yeves Perez, CEO, EcoHub

The fact is that California CEOs are creating jobs everyday and the public should expect nothing less from these business leaders in San Diego to vie for “the Cleantech Capital” title and protect the job growth in our region. So on Monday the 18th, I refused to waste my time pitching to investors, signing deals, and creating revenue, when there are hard working men and women canvassing neighborhoods until November 2nd, fighting to protect my green company’s existence.

Everyday my job is at risk as CEO of EcoHub, a hub for clean tech companies, especially if I do nothing to lead the company to prosperity and resilience. An overwhelming feeling came over me to urge other CEOs to join forces for the only official CEO organized gathering in the State of California. We came together in opposition to Prop 23 not just for ourselves and our bottom-line, but for young eager minds including a sixth-grader named Meghan. A little girl who can’t vote yet, but knows she wants to work in Clean Energy when she grows up!

Soon after a room of CEOs saw this video:

we united and took action. I am so proud to stand side-by-side with other job creators in crafting the following open letter:

As a group of CEOs from across the political spectrum representing varied San Diego businesses, we would like to urge San Diegans to vote No on Proposition 23.

Passage of this proposition would effectively repeal the landmark Clean Energy Law, AB32. In anticipation of AB32 being implemented, the group has seen a boom of clean energy technology businesses that has created more than 500,000 new jobs and $9.1 billion in private equity investments to our state. In fact, clean technology jobs are growing at a rate 10 times the average of other industries.

The group states that support for Proposition 23 is being provided by large oil refining companies and related out-of-state interests who are primarily concerned about the impact of pollution control on their profits. These entities are using misleading scare tactics to try to convince Californians that Proposition 23 would save jobs in California. What they are not telling us is that Proposition 23 would halt the clean energy development and clean-tech job creation that have provided the only recent bright spot in our economy and one of the most promising global growth industries of this century. Killing off California’s fastest growing industry is a recipe for higher, not lower, unemployment.

Political leaders from both parties including the mayors and city councils of San Diego, La Mesa, Del Mar, Imperial Beach, Solana Beach and Chula Vista, along with over 1,000 companies, investors and business leaders across the state are in agreement with us that Prop 23 is bad for California and needs to be defeated (Carlsbad City Council was just added).

As CEOs running businesses during these difficult economic times, the group firmly believes that the passage of this initiative would be harmful at best and devastating at worst for our business community, neighborhoods, and the California economy.

A NO vote on Proposition 23 is a vote for more jobs in California.

Respectfully,

Robert Noble, CEO, Envision Solar, Chair, San Diego CEOs
Yeves Perez, CEO, EcoHub, Co-Chair, San Diego CEOs
Ronald L. Pitt, CEO, EcoDog, Organizing Committee Member, San Diego CEOs
Anne Tolch, Organizing Committee Member

San Diego CEOs

Thomas Ackerman, CEO, Spirit Graphics and Printing
Barry Braden, CEO, Pizza Fusion Hillcrest, LLC
Barbara Burton, CEO, The Burton Company
Mike D’Ascanio, CEO, Earth-List.com
Jeffrey DiToro, CEO, ArmorGrafix
T. Todd Elvins, CEO, Clean Venture
Jessica Finley, CEO, iJourneyGreen
Dan Gibbs, CEO, Home Town Farms, LLC
Robert Hamm, CEO, ECO Re Box
Steve Harrington, CEO, Flo Metrics
Adam Hiner, CEO, Eco Caters
Tyler Jensen, CEO The Startup Garage
Mario Larach, CEO, Kai BioEnergy
Mark Mandell, CEO, Square One Development
Karim Pirani, CEO SafeList.com
Todd M. Pitcher, CEO, Aspire Clean Tech Communications
Douglas Poffinbarger, CEO, PE Consulting
Robert Reyes, CEO, Startup Circle
David Saltman, CEO, Malama Composites
Tad Simmons, CEO, Green Source
Camille Sobrian, CEO, CONNECT
Quentin Sponselee, CEO, TerraMoto
David Steel, CEO, Green Chamber of San Diego County
Ted Torre-Bueno, CEO, Empowered Energy Solutions
Jim Torti, CEO, Noble Environmental Technologies/ECOR
Courtland Weisleder, CEO, Greener Dawn
Robert Wilder, CEO, WilderShares

Newest additions:
Martin Rockstrom, CEO, LeRockstar Creative Agency
Kathleen M. Connell, M.A., CEO, Connell Whittaker Group LLC
Gregory Goehner, CEO, NewGrass
Lane Sharman, CEO, BWX Incorporated & Solana Energy
Sidnee Chong, CEO, EcoPackStore, LLC
Michael Vargas, CEO, Atlas Project Support
Julie Zizka, CEO, Momentum 1 Products, Inc

My final ask for the readers of this post is that all of you consider pressing the reset button on what you think you know about “what’s really going on”. Megan can’t vote on November 2nd, and to “share” her video is equivalent to a vote NO on 23. As CEO of EcoHub, it is my fiduciary responsibility to send the “right” message to future generations and invest on a more stable, long term economic basis.

Yeves Perez is the CEO and co-founder of EcoHub, San Diego’s first Cleantech/ green business incubator and the co-founder of Eco Investment Club, held by Eco Investment Network International. Starting at age 14, after the loss of his grandmother to asbestos poisoning, he dedicated his career path and family focus to sustainability. He currently serves on the board of the Sustainability Alliance of Southern California, and was named in SDNN’s top 35 under 35 green entrepreneurs.


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  • Earl Richards

    PROP 26 is just as destructive as PROP 23. Prop 26 is a treacherous, Big Oil rip-off, which “passes the buck” from oil corporation, clean-up fees to the public’s taxes, which will pay for the oil recycling fees, the materials hazards fees and other fees. If you do not understand the ambiguities and the intrigues behind Prop 26, then, vote no. Power to the people. Shell, Exxon Mobil and BP are silent partners in Prop 26.

  • Wayne

    Ok, this proves it to me. You simply can’t fight Prop23 with the truth. You have to resort to scare tactics. The truth about AB 32 would have a landslide win for Prop23, but we can’t have that now can we?

    Prop 23 leaves California with the toughest pollution laws in the nation, and among the toughest in the world.

    AB 32 does not target the pollution that causes health issues. It goes after global warming, but it can’t help global warming either.

    Proposition 23 seeks to suspend AB 32 to protect Califonia’s already shrinking economy.

    Texas is growing its economy at the same pace that California is shrinking its economy, and Texas has TRIPLE the wind powered electrical generation as California. Texas has no job killer global warming law.

    The enforcement of AB 32 will cause an economic disaster for California that will keep other states from passing such legislation, and probably do more harm for the cause than it will help the environment.

    Points to ponder on AB 32 / Prop 23:

    ° AB 32 is not a pollution law, it is a global warming law, but it won’t have any effect on global warming.

    ° CARB over-estimated diesel emmisions by 340%. What else have they over-estimated?

    ° Key CARB personnel caught lying about credentials and then failing to reveal this after it is discovered internally before AB 32 passed, until after AB 32 passed. What else are they lying about and with-holding?

    ° CARB has admitted that California alone cannot have an impact on reducing global warming and CO2 emissions, and that it will hurth the economy and cost jobs.

    ° US EPA acknowledges that US action alone will not impact the world CO2 levels;

    ° US EPA (11 July 2010) said that bills in Congress will not reduce the total use of gas and oil of 20 million gallons per day for decades.

    ° LAO (CA Legislative Analyst Office) stated: CA economy at large will be adversely affected by implementation of climate-related policies that are not in place elsewhere. (Letter to Dan Logue, 13 May 2010)

    ° 5.5% unemployment for 4 consecutive quarters has occurred 7 times since 2005, 14 times since 1999, and 22 times since 1987.
    http://www.labormarketinfo.edd.ca.gov/?pageid=164

    California has lost over a hundred billion dollars in income and revenue due to businesses leaving just this year. California has over 2 million people unemployed, with another million on the chopping block if AB 32 is fully enforced.

    AB 32 supporters claim 500,000 jobs and an 80 billion dollar industry are at risk. Do the math! AB 32 can never hope to replace the jobs and income that it will cost us.

    When the loudest objections to any candidacy or initiative are focused on vilifying its financial backers, this often indicates that its opponents’ arguments on its merits are weak.

    If Proposition 23 is rejected, here is what will happen according to expert sources:

    •A 60 percent increase in your electricity bill according to the Southern California Public Power Authority.

    •An 8 percent increase in your natural gas bill according to CARB’s economic analysis.

    •$50,000 more for the price of a new home according to an analysis by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

    •$3.7 billion a year more for gasoline and diesel according to Sierra Research.

    •A $1,000-$3,000 additional cost for a new car according to CARB and automaker studies.

    On top of all that, a study conducted for the California Small Business Roundtable found that AB 32 regulations would cost small business alone nearly $200 billion, and would result in more than 1 million lost jobs.

    The more I learn about AB 32, the more I fear it. It just gets worse. Please vote yes on Prop23.

    “”2 Guys on the Bay Area Transportation Board told the CARB people, “If you try to do what you are going to do(AB 32) we’ll have gas at $9.07 a gallon and we have freeway tolls at up to $4,500 a year to drive during rush hour.”

    “Part of the plan is to stop suburban development, get people to stop driving, make driving too expensive for people to live out there, force them to live in high-rises, condos, in the city.”

    For months, John and Ken have made Prop 23 their top priority, calling it a necessary step to stop a law they say will kill jobs and cost Californians a fortune in higher gas and energy prices. With an estimated one million listeners per week, these two guys usually manage to rally enough votes to get their way.

    The video has John and Ken explaining why they think this bill is the most important measure on the ballot.

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/39853750

    Vote yes on Prop 23 and suspend AB32.

  • http://8020vision.com jaykimball

    Prop 23 is toast. Pay attention to Prop 26. More at:
    http://8020vision.com/2010/10/25/californias-prop-23-morphing-into-prop-26/

    Jay Kimball
    8020 Vision

  • http://www.greenstarstandard.com PM Dekker

    Why is it that the major supporters of Prop 23 are oil companies?
    Do they see a real threat to their revenues when electric vehicles hit the market and reduce the dependence on oil-based fuels?
    When you see this link (http://www.geni.org/globalenergy/library/GENI-us/2010/geni-us-letter-2010-11.shtml), how does this visual change oil companies’ revenues when electric vehicles get charged using coal?

  • debbie 1960

    Everyone exhales carbon Dioxide. It is impossible for CO2 to be the cause of asthma.

    Hope this is an intelligent comment for an article using scare tactics.

  • Wayne

    The key thing to keep in mind is that, according to CARB, the organization who wrote and will enforce AB32, AB 32 will do NOTHING to help global warming, will cost jobs and have a negative effect on the economy. This comes from the very people who drew it up!

    AB 32 does nothing for local pollution.

    Prop 23 leaves us with the toughest pollution laws in the country, among the toughest in the world. It will NOT increase local pollution

    If Proposition 23 is rejected, here is what will happen according to expert sources:

    •A 60 percent increase in your electricity bill according to the Southern California Public Power Authority.

    •An 8 percent increase in your natural gas bill according to CARB’s economic analysis.

    •$50,000 more for the price of a new home according to an analysis by the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

    •$3.7 billion a year more for gasoline and diesel according to Sierra Research.

    •A $1,000-$3,000 additional cost for a new car according to CARB and automaker studies.

    On top of all that, a study conducted for the California Small Business Roundtable found that AB 32 regulations would cost small business alone nearly $200 billion, and would result in more than 1 million lost jobs.

    The more I learn about AB 32, the more I fear it. It just gets worse. Please vote yes on Prop23.

    “”2 Guys on the Bay Area Transportation Board told the CARB people, “If you try to do what you are going to do(AB 32) we’ll have gas at $9.07 a gallon and we have freeway tolls at up to $4,500 a year to drive during rush hour.”

    “Part of the plan is to stop suburban development, get people to stop driving, make driving too expensive for people to live out there, force them to live in high-rises, condos, in the city.”

    For months, John and Ken have made Prop 23 their top priority, calling it a necessary step to stop a law they say will kill jobs and cost Californians a fortune in higher gas and energy prices. With an estimated one million listeners per week, these two guys usually manage to rally enough votes to get their way.

    The video has John and Ken explaining why they think this bill is the most important measure on the ballot.

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/39853750

  • carl @ San Diego Banking Rates

    It’s great that you’ve chosen to rally with business owners and CEOs. It will really get your message across to a whole lot more people when you have successful individuals backing you up. No on 23!