Prop. 87 Will Show Us the Way Out

Once again I read in the NY Times information that I already knew about from reading Wired Magazine. It was Thomas Friedman’s column about California’s Proposition 87, which taxes oil companies on oil produced in the state and that would generate some $4 billion with which to finance research into alternative fuels and renewable energy.

Friedman argues that Governor Arnold should embrace this and campaign for it; the Wired story was written by a venture capitalist who believes that we are very close to producing energy using not only ethanol from corn, but using the stalks and other cellulose to make fuel. There is of course much more of this byproduct than there is corn, so this is a nearly unlimited source of energy. The numbers add up, and the science is moving far faster than our government. Big shock!

I read the story on the bus down to NYC in July, and was charged up since people in the big money business usually have strong reasons to believe in their causes. To me it’s more honest, this guy is out to make a buck investing in these new ethanol technologies, and like Friedman, he thinks this new citizen referendum will make a big difference. And it would complement the great things the Governor is already promoting with carbon dioxide emissions reduction.

Let’s hope the gov hears the science and goes out to campaign for this. As Exxon Mobil paid its outgoing chairman Lee Raymond $400,000,000, it’s time for us to tax these companies so that they help finance us OUT of this stupid dependence on their products. This could be a giant and exciting beginning of the way out!