California State Treasurer and Democratic Candidate for Governor Phil Angelides today released Coast Guard, his plan to protect the California coastline, end Governor Schwarzenegger’s policy of neglect, and defeat President Bush’s new plans to drill for oil and gas off the California coast. Angelides, who has been endorsed by 70 prominent environmental leaders and Vote the Coast, a grassroots political action organization whose purpose is to achieve coastal protection and conservation, unveiled the plan in Santa Barbara.
“The California coast is endangered and President Bush and Governor Schwarzenegger are taking us in the wrong direction,” said Angelides. “When it comes to the coast, Governor Schwarzenegger moves his lips but doesn’t lift a hand to protect our coast. Unlike this Governor, I will offer real action and a real plan.”
Coast Guard – The Angelides Plan for Protecting the California Coast will:
• Launch a comprehensive program to identify, purchase, and protect key undeveloped portions of the coast.
• Fight for a permanent federal ban on oil and gas drilling off the California coast.
• Require comprehensive state planning before approval of any liquid natural gas (LNG) terminals and desalination plants on the coast.
• Restore funding for the Coastal Commission and other coastal protection agencies.
• Reduce coastal pollution and beach closures from sewage and runoff.
• Require lobbyists to register and disclose their contacts with the Coastal Commission.
“Phil Angelides is an informed, decisive, and visionary leader who is committed to protecting California’s magnificent coast for generations to come,” said Susan Jordan of the California Coastal Protection Network. “As Governor, he won’t just talk about protecting California’s tremendous natural resources, he’ll deliver.”
Currently, three-dozen wastewater plants dump 1.5 billion gallons of sewage a day into the Pacific off California’s coast, many of them into shallow waters, forcing 3,985 beach closures and warnings in 2004 alone. This past summer, Los Angeles beaches had the worst water quality in five years. However, in the face of these mounting threats to the coast, Governor Schwarzenegger slashed legislative appropriations for the already under-funded Coastal Commission, failed to fund the Marine Life Protection Act and vetoed legislation requiring public disclosure of lobbyists’ private contacts with coastal commissioners.
California’s coast is also under attack in Washington, where President Bush and Republicans in Congress are pushing to resume oil and gas exploration and drilling off the cost, risking catastrophic new oil spills.
“As Governor, I will work with Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Congresswoman Lois Capps to permanently ban offshore oil drilling off the California coast,” Angelides added.
“Arnold Schwarzenegger claims to support our coast, but his words just don’t match his actions,” said Vote the Coast Board Member Ozzie Silna. “We need a Governor who will truly stand up for our coast and aggressively fight to ban offshore oil drilling once and for all.”
Angelides’ campaign for Governor is co-chaired by Senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez and has been endorsed by over 70 prominent California environmental leaders including Congresswoman Lois Capps, Carlyle Hall and Robert Garcia of the Center for Law in the Public Interest, Mary Nichols of UCLA’s Institute of the Environment, Gary Patton of Land Watch Monterey County, Sara Wan of the California Coastal Commission, former State Senator Byron Sher, former Planning and Conservation League executive director Gerald Meral, conservationist Sam Schuchat, Global Green founder Diane Meyer Simon, and environmental advocates Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Ted Danson, Ed Begley Jr. and Laurie David.
Angelides’ campaign has also been endorsed by a broad coalition of Santa Barbara County leaders including Congresswoman Lois Capps, Santa Barbara County Supervisors Salud Carbajal and Susan Rose, Santa Barbara Mayor Marty Blum, Mayor Pro Tem Helene Schneider, Santa Barbara City Councilmembers Iya Falcone, Roger Horton and Das Williams, former County Supervisor Naomi Schwartz and Susan Jordan of the California Coastal Protection Network.