Friday, July 31, 2009

PPIC Poll: Support For AB 32 Declines For The 2nd Straight Year

Now this poll doesn't deal with SB 375, which, for lack of a better term, should probably be referred to as the "BIA Bill." BIA in that the lobbying organization for the construction and redevelopment industries probably scored the greatest victory of its storied existence when it convinced our post-evolutionary representatives in Sacramento that erecting huge amounts of high-density housing in already built-out communities would somehow save the planet from Global Warming.

What was discussed with the citizens by the friendly pollsters at the Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) was AB 32, also known as the Greenhouse Gas Law. AB 32 advocates such things as the production of low emission automobiles and controlling what comes out of smokestacks. A far more reasonable appoach than what its prodigal son, SB 375, threatens us with. And while it is unfortunate that the now overshadowed AB 32 is the focus of this survey, we'll take whatever information we can get. Here's how the PPIC reports it:

Solid majorities of Californians favor state policies to curb global warming, according to a survey released today ... But in a year that has seen both a worsening recession and state budget crisis, residents' support for urgent action on climate change has slipped and a partisan divide on the issue has widened.

Most residents (66%) support the 2006 California law (AB 32) that requires greenhouse gas emissions to be reduced to 1990 levels by 2020. Support has declined 7 points from July 2008 (73%) and 12 points from 2007 (78%). The decline is sharpest among Republicans (57% 2008, 43% today).

Now AB 32, at least on the surface, is obviously something that does not seem threatening to your average voter. It deals mainly with automobile and smokestack emissions as the source of greenhouse gases, with the solution being the reduction of just that through the creation of cleaner and more efficient technologies. But even with a law that puts the burden mostly on the industrial creators of greenhouse gases and not the consumers of their products, enthusiasm on the topic has begun to wane a bit.

While most see global warming as a threat (47% very serious, 28% somewhat serious) to the economy and quality of life in the state, the percentage of residents who categorize the threat as very serious has declined over the past two years (54% 2007, 52% 2008, 47% today.) Residents are divided over whether the state government should take action to reduce emissions right away (48%) or wait until the economy and state budget situation improve (46%). In July 2008, when the plan to implement AB 32 was being discussed, a majority (57%) said the government should adopt it right away rather than wait (36%).

But as I said above, this really is an out-of-date consideration. Most of the people questioned for this poll probably felt that they were being asked about things such as automakers being required to sell them cars that emit lower levels of greenhouse gases. A quaint concept that really is far less relevant today than it was a couple years back. Because the boys in Sacramento apparently aren't all that concerned about improving the energy efficiency of cars anymore. They have much bigger fish to fry.

What those polled were not asked about is the far more draconian SB 375. I can only wonder how people would react upon being informed that redevelopers sanctioned by the state and backed by the courts might be seizing entire neighborhoods of their cities in order to build massive amounts of high-density multiple-use structures designed in part to house the economically disadvantaged. And I'd really like to see a poll that would get the reaction of these same people upon being informed that packing thousands of new residents into their towns (with all the resulting problems that go with such radically engineered social change) is being done to somehow reduce greenhouse gases.

Somehow I think their support for such an initiative would fade a bit.

A related Los Angeles Times article about this poll can he found here.

30 comments:

  1. Much of the confidence pols have in being able to pull
    off SB 375 type development in California has to come
    from a belief that people aren't going to figure it all out.
    Because if people get a clue about what is going on there
    would be some pretty serious opposition.

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  2. How does the healthy desire for cleaner air, cleaner water, and food with essential nutrients get so twisted in politics?
    Our politicians need to put aside all the debates and work on people being able to have the fundamentals. You would think we're a self destructive species or something. Our best quality is our ability to problem solve, but there hasn't been a lot of that in the last 50 years or so.
    Built out equals no more room. It's called a density-dependent limiting factor.

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  3. We're up against a powerful and corrupt political machine in Sacramento which spans the entire State of Calif. including right here in Sierra Madre. Just look at the majority of people who have been on our past City Councils.
    Most have been total puppets of the BIA and the CAR and the corrupt political machine that are suppose to be representing the people and only represent special corrupt interests like the BIA, and the so called "green movement"-think Government control of everyone.
    Day is absolutely right, it's a sad but very true commentary.
    Good news, if we care and stand up for what's right, we can reverse this evil trend before it's too late.

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  4. It's a sad state of affairs when politicians, public servants, become the enemies of the people they're supposed to be representing.

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  5. Sierra Madre business ownerJuly 31, 2009 at 8:57 AM

    Great point Old K.
    The news gets so discouraging, it's good to be reminded that we can change things, just like we did here in SM with Measure V.

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  6. People should drive cleaner cars. And there should be hard and neverending work on developing earth friendly technologies. But what does that have to do with building huge swathes of closely packed condos in towns that don't want them? The disconnect here is huge. How did the effort to stop global warming get hijacked by the development lobbies in Sacramento? And why is Joe Mosca the head of a committee to enforce this madness?

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  7. Yes 9:01! Who doesn't want to become from from dependence on oil, and who doesn't want to find ways to grow food and manage water in healthy, nature friendly ways? I think everybody agrees, on the Right & the Left, so why the heck is it so hard to do? Why all this useless time in debate? I'm old enough to remember the efforts for better sources of energy from way, way back.

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  8. I meant "free from" rather than from from. Old old timer.

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  9. OT - The almighty dollar, of course. Any time there is a support for something like this along come the usual suspects to try and cash in. The sad thing is that once people catch wind of the BS, cynicism follows. The biggest victim here will end up being the cause to reduce global warming. Nobody will believe in it anymore, and automatically assume that what they're hearing is just more greenwash.

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  10. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  11. Our air quality will not get better until the car manufactures sell cars/trucks that are "clean". The state has the power to requie this except for one problem the lawmakers are owned by the special interest groups. The technology exists.

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  12. 9:25 well said.
    Cynicsm always means throwing the baby out with the bath water.
    Nobody has to believe anything scientists say or don't say, or whatever.
    But we can all agree that we want a healthy earth.

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  13. Pasta, I wish you were in charge.

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  14. Global warming. Phooey. The glaciers have been melting for thousands of years. That is why we not longer live in the ice age.

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  15. Pasta is right. If car emissions are the real problem, then fix that. Don't go tearing up towns and building high-density housing so people might decide to drive less. What a bunch of insane crap. Fix the damn car situation and leave our cities alone.

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  16. Thank you anon. 11:37!! Golobal warming is not happening and it's unfortunate that so many so called scientists are on that band wagon. Check the surface temps for the past 10 years and you will see that we peaked temp in 1998 and have been going down since. The GW hype is all about getting our tax dollars. I agree with cleaner air, water, etc..but don't try and sell me on GW as it's not happening . Sea surface temps and solar radiation have more to do with our climate. Currently the pacific ocean is in it's cool phase our weather will stay cool and dry. I just wish more people would research GW and start looking at the actual data instead of being sheep that follow what the media, the President and what Al Gore says.

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  17. Nutritious Delicious PizzaJuly 31, 2009 at 12:38 PM

    11:37, funny, right? Even the car lobbies have more power in this state than the voting public. We are at the bottom of the totem pole.

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  18. not a calorie counterJuly 31, 2009 at 1:11 PM

    Pasta and Pizza for council. No salad greens.

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  19. 12:24, knowledgeable people disagree on that whole issue, so I say to hell with it, let's stop arguing about who is right and just do better things for the natural cycles of the earth. Al Gore or Bill O'Reily, who cares? Help the kids breathe better. Help our cities stay at sizes that the natural resources around them can support. The rest is red herring time.

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  20. Act locally, and assume the rest are jerks.

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  21. We will control all of you peasants one way or another. If it's not Global warming, then it will be global cooling.
    And all you people in Sierra Madre are using too big a "carbon footprint", especially you "stroller moms" who drive around in SUV's and criticize me, algore, for flying my jet around the world, don't you understand I'm "special" I'm algore, and you're not! Hear that, Sir Eric Maundry? You had better stop spreading the fact, I mean rumor, that big buildings cause major pollution to the environment, I'll throw you off my internet,don't you forget that I,algore, invented the internet.

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  22. Hey, it looks like we have someone obsessed with red herrings. Hard to focus on real issues, ain't it?

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  23. I find it interesting that a politician with so little charisma generates the kind of frenzy that Gore does. You would think that the frothing at the mouth over Al Gore would be saved for someone more dynamic...

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  24. That is interesting. I have no doubt Al Gore would find AB 32 to his liking, but SB 375? The "Build Until We Drop" law being about green as a Jiffy Lube. I still think Al is authentic in his beliefs, and this would be quite a litmus test for the guy.

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  25. True to form, party politics hurt the community. I'm with Bad Karma: act locally & assume the rest are jerks.

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  26. Party politics is just a war between two groups of people who believe in things that don't exist. Real issues have nothing to do with any of it.

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  27. 5:30 AM Michillinda Lonesome SashayJuly 31, 2009 at 4:16 PM

    Off topic, but if you love Michillinda Avenue, here are some interesting facts from Wikipedia. "One source of the name has been attributed to a compilation of the names of three states: Michigan, Illinois, and Indiana. A man named Forbes, who laid out an early addition to Pasadena, was the son of one of the founders of an association of summer cottages in Michigan for which the name was created in the 1890s, originally hyphenated Mich-Ill-Inda."

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michillinda_Avenue_(Pasadena)

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  28. 5:30... geez, never heard that before.. ;-)

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  29. ME NEITHER. I ALWAYS FIGURED IT WAS SOMEBODY'S WIFE'S NAME. OR SOMETHING.

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  30. Same poll shows Arnold's approval number at 28%. That is much too high considering what a mess he's made of thing. What's the state legislature's approval number? 3?

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