A message from Greenpeace:
Victory!-- Californians! Protect the California Coast from Oil Spills!
Thanks to the tireless work of a broad coalition of supporters and people like you, Governor Jerry Brown has signed The Oil Spill Preparedness Act into law.
California will now have the resources and programs needed to prevent and respond to oil spills as best it can. As gateways for global commerce, San Francisco Bay and the L.A. and Long Beach Harbors are used for more than 6,000 oil transfer operations—known as bunkering and lightering—each year, effectively creating a daily threat of oil spills in these waters. In 2010, more than 400 million barrels of oil were transferred across the State’s open waters to bunker and lighter ships—filling their giant tanks with fuel or offloading crude oil cargo. In most cases these operations, many involving high volume transfers of toxic oil products, are conducted safely and without incident; however, mechanical failures and human errors do occur, and oil spills happen.
With AB 1112 signed into law the Office of Spill Prevention and Response (OSPR) will enact regulations that increase oversight and monitoring of those daily oil spill threats laying and waiting in our blue-water front yard. Significantly, and the source of strong opposition form the oil industry, this bill provides a reprieve to the State’s financially floundering oil spill prevention and response programs by adding a one and a half penny increase to the fee charged on imported oil. That per-barrel oil fee, currently set at five cents and only increased once since its inception in 1990 (by one penny in 2002), creates the oil spill fund that pays for California’s prevention and response programs. Still, political will to pass this bill was weak in the face of the powerful oil industry lobby. A final amendment to the bill, bringing enough votes for its passage, was a three year sunset provision. This means that the law and all the needed revenue and policy improvements that it provides will no longer be legally required after three years time. The fight goes on, thank you for all your support.
Take Action to Keep California’s Coasts, Beaches and Bays Safe From Oil Spills
The CA Senate is set to vote next week on a Make It or Break It bill for California! Call your Senator today – really!! This vote is going to be tight – the oil industry doesn’t want to pay to keep California safe - and the only way to convince key swing Senators to vote against the recommendations of the Oil Industry lobbyists if they hear from you, their constituents.
California’s oil spill prevention and response programs are running out of money and if we don’t act now we will be left unprotected!
Californians value our beautiful marine environment and the law purposefully requires that we have the “Best Achievable Protection” from oil spills. That’s why the Oil Spill Prevention Administration Fund (Oil Spill Fund) was established with a fee charged on every barrel of oil that comes into California to fund critical oil spill prevention and response programs. But that fee has only been increased once, by one penny, in the fund’s history and it has not kept pace with inflation or today’s standards of best achievable protection from oil spills.
Tell these Senators to Put Californians Before Oil Industry Profits!
The oil industry doesn’t want to pay the one and three quarter penny needed to keep California protected – a one penny increase will generate about $5 mil annually to the Oil Spill Fund. Can the oil industry afford the increase? Yes they can! Second quarter profits for only the big five oil companies topped $35 billion – a 9% boost over 2010 profits. Californians on the other hand, are paying more of their dwindling paychecks at the pumps and will be relying on the Senate to vote yes for AB 1112 to keep our waters free from oil. Call these Senators today and let them know you want them to put Californians before the oil industry’s astronomical profits!!
What can you do next? Call our senate targets and express your concern:
Sen. Rod Wright- staff: Stan DiOrio 916-651-4025
Sen. Juan Vargas- staff: Jim Anderson 916-651-4040
Sen. Michael Rubio- staff: Sergio Reyer 916-651-4016
Sen. Ron Calderon- staff: Sean Henschel 916-651-4030
Sen. Ed Hernandez- staff: Walter Hughes 916-651-4024
Sen. Curren Price- staff: Curtis Earnest 916-651-4026
Sen. Gloria Negrete-McLeod- staff: Vince Marchand 916-651-4032