By Ronald Stein
Under the leadership of Governor Gavin Newsom, rich and poor Democrats have been watching the financial gap between them getting wider as his inflicts heavy energy costs onto the less fortunate in California. Starting mid-August, in the Democratic registration-controlled state of California, absentee voters get an opportunity to voice their decision in advance of the September 14th recall election date to cast their ballot for Newsom to support the continuation of his policies biased against the poor or reject him for newer blood to lead the state.
The wealthy Democrats can afford energy at any costs, while the Governor supports exorbitant energy costs that have been contributory to the rapid growth of “energy poverty” and makes California’s economic recovery from the pandemic even more challenging for the 18 million that represent the Hispanic and African American populations of the state.
In a state with the highest costs for electricity and fuels in the nation, Newsom continues to do everything possible to further INCREASE the costs for electricity and fuels for its 40 million residents. Those huge regressive costs have not boded well for the bottom half making less than $20 an hour.
The Governor continues biasing systemic racial, health, economic, and environmental injustices that persist against the economic survivability of those that can least afford expensive electricity and fuels, those with low income and those retirees on fixed incomes. Poverty, not global warming, remains the biggest challenge for California.
Costs for electricity, especially for intermittent electricity generation from breezes and sunshine, have been skyrocketing, inflicting more energy costs onto the less fortunate as an unwanted regressive expense. The median income for Latino households in 2016 was $56,200, $55,200 for African American households, and $96,400 for white households.
According to several studies, as many as 40 percent of all Californians cannot regularly meet basic monthly expenses. The report from the Energy Information Agency (EIA) shows that California’s electricity policies have contributed to household users paying 50 percent more, and industrial users paying more than 100 percent more than the national average for electricity. Only Hawaii has higher rates. What is being done to reverse the cost of electricity?
Governor Newsom apparently did not read the required reading for the next EV owner: Drawbacks of EV’s, before he announced on September 23, 2020 an executive order to ban the sale of gas-powered vehicles by 2035. The governor cannot make that EV declaration on his own, but he can direct his agencies do to it, which they will under their current clean air act waiver, and other laws they believe grant them this authority. The executive order directs the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to implement rulemaking to ban the sale of the vehicles.
- To complicate the Governor’s desire for lifestyle changes for Californians, CARB has no authority over vehicle registration. You will still be able to purchase and register a used internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle or one brought in from out of state.
- CARB also has no authority to set registration fees.
He is directing the state and to the Hispanic and African American populations that, by 2035, all new cars and passenger trucks sold in California be zero-emission vehicles. The Governor is oblivious to the EV trends being set by current users.
- EV usage being slightly more than 5,000 miles a year is a reflection that the EV is a second vehicle, for those that can afford them, and not the family workhorse vehicle.
- The growing percentage of EV users that are switching back to gasoline cars, is a message that may deflate EV growth projections.
- The highly educated and financially well off are currently the primary owners of EV’s.
- The larger and heavier gasoline driven SUVs are currently half of the new car sales.
Automobiles are the survival mechanism for low-income people. If you increase the cost of automobiles and the costs of fuel, you hurt low-income people who are already forced to pay almost $1.00 more per gallon of fuel than the rest of the country. Newsom never discusses that regressive expense on the less fortunate.
High energy costs trickle down to everything in our daily lives, from the cost of food, lumber, and services, and ultimately to the high cost of living and housing in California and perpetuates the rise in homelessness and poverty.
Under Newsom’s direction (I did not use the word “leadership”) the future “energy costs” looks very bleak for ALL 40 million residents of the state as the economy starts to recover back to near-normal energy demands for the fifth largest economy in the world. The Governor refuses to focus on REDUCING the cost of energy.
The Governor is supportive of creating a national security risk for all of America, as California’s dependency on foreign suppliers for California’s energy needs, as well as the West Coast military operations, has increased imported crude oil from foreign countries from 5 percent in 1992 to 58 percent today of total consumption.
As a result of the Governor’s continuous efforts to decrease in-state oil production, the crude oil imported from countries halfway around the world, representing 58 percent of the states’ needs, costs California more than $60 million dollars a day, yes, every day, being paid to oil-rich foreign countries.
On Earth Day 2021, to gain personal press and another instant gratification act, Newsom ordered an end to fracking in California by 2024, and to work toward phasing out all in-state oil production by 2045, perpetuating continuous cost increases.
Newsom’s irresponsible fiscal actions will increase worldwide emissions and require California to increase its monthly imports resulting in expenditures increasing from the current $60 million dollars a day to a whopping $90 million EVERY DAY for foreign countries to support the fifth largest economy in the world. Are the port infrastructures capable of receiving all its energy from foreign countries?
By encouraging oil demands be met from foreign countries halfway around the world, Newsom continues to support greater emissions generated by those foreign countries to meet the states’ energy demands, as they have significantly less stringent environmental regulations than California, if any. Is it ethical to “leak” emission generation to other countries, and dictate that California residents bear the growing costs?
Starting in mid-August, absentee voters can decide in advance of the September 14th Recall Election date, of the hypocritical Governor Newsom and his dysfunctional energy policies that continue to inflict financial harm to most Democrats, and proliferates the growth of poverty and homelessness for those that cannot bear the growing regressive costs upon half the population. The gap between rich Democrats and the poor is getting wider every day that Newsom remains the Governor.