Lobby Silicon Valley East Chapter supports strong, aggressive
carbon emissions reduction targets.
alternative in the draft scoping plan, by far, is Alternative 1. We
need to hit net zero as soon as possible. As such, the 2035
alternatives are preferred. We prefer Alternative 1 because it
focuses on eliminating fossil fuel combustion quickly, does not
rely on rapid development of CO2 removal technologies, and honors
the input from the Environmental Justice Advisory
Here are our
concerns with relying on CO2 removal:
1. Even if we
could capture 100% of the carbon from a fossil fuel plant using
scrubbers on the smokestacks, the other pollutants released by the
plant would continue to cause harm to communities around the plant
and perpetuate environmental injustice.
2. Given a
net-neutrality target date that is quickly approaching, we cannot
plan on non-existent/unproven technology to meet the target. This
would be like going hiking in the desert without water and assuming
we’ll run into an oasis. The plan should be made under the
assumption that CCS/CDR will still be in its current undeveloped
state in 2035/2045. If new CCS/CDR technology turns out to be fully
scaled-up, then great! But we should not make a plan assuming that
CCS/CDR will be ready in time.
3. CCS/CDR could
become a distraction, diverting resources from other proven methods
of reducing emissions (more public transit, more electrification,
more solar and wind, sustainable agricultural practices, etc). We
can avoid diverting too many resources away from emissions
reduction by setting a maximum cap on how much to spend on CCS/CDR,
for example, 5% of total climate action budget.
We do need to
invest in CDR to address legacy emissions to address the fact that
there is already too much CO2 in the atmosphere. However, this must
not be construed as an alternative to emissions reduction. We need
to stop emitting AND remove legacy carbon.
We have already
wasted too much time in the race to solve the climate crisis.
People have already lost their lives due to heat waves, wildfires,
and extreme weather events. We see the beginnings of climate-driven
geopolitical instability. These impacts will only get worse the
longer it takes to reach global carbon neutrality.
Many states and
countries acknowledge California's leadership role and will
replicate the path that California takes. California should take
the most aggressive path as a demonstration case. Decarbonizing
sooner will pick up the slack for others who are behind and don't
have the resources or interest. Every tenth of a degree