FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: October 7, 2015
CONTACT: Shazia Manji, smanji@psr-la.org

(LOS ANGELES) Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles celebrates the passage of Senate Bill 350, authored by Senate President pro Tempore Kevin de León. Governor Jerry Brown signed SB 350 into law this morning, October 7th, placing us on a path looking forward to a future of clean and safe energy production, with a greater emphasis on protecting our most vulnerable communities. Climate, environmental justice, and public health leaders joined Governor Brown for the signing of this landmark legislation. PSR-LA Executive Director, Martha Dina Argüello, introduced Senator de Leon and spoke about what this new legislation means for the health of Californians.

SB 350 requires California to increase its renewable energy standard to 50% by 2030, and to increase energy efficiency by 50% by 2030. Originally the bill included a requirement to reduce petroleum usage by 50% as well, but steep opposition from the oil industry caused the mandate to be struck on the Assembly Floor.

While the removal of the petroleum reductions piece is a huge loss for California, SB 350 remains strong legislation that codifies California’s commitment to energy independence and a new and inclusive green economy. The old fossil fuel economy has not only failed to help our wallets but has forced environmental justice communities to pay the price with their health. Studies show that air pollution in Southern California has led to deficits in respiratory growth in children, and that smog not only has negative impacts on the cognitive function of children, but also increases the risk of cognitive decline in adults.

SB 350 puts us on a path towards health and economic justice. It is an opportunity to create a new economy that does not force workers to choose between their health and a paycheck. PSR-LA is excited to participate in this victory for environmental justice and we look forward to working with Governor Jerry Brown and Senator Kevin De León on future climate actions.

Martha Dina Argüello, Executive Director, Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles
We are extremely happy that Governor Brown is signing SB 350, and grateful for Senator de Leon’s leadership. PSR-LA is committed to continuing to work with the Governor, the Legislature, and the California Air Resources Board to make sure SB 350 lives up to the promise of reducing climate change, protecting vulnerable communities, and setting a course for a renewable green energy economy.

###

Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles is a physician and health advocate membership organization working to protect public health from environmental toxins and nuclear threats. We bring the voices of health experts to the forefront of critical policy discussions, and work alongside health professionals, advocates, and policymakers to create solutions that improve the health and environment for all Californians. Connect with us on Twitter and Facebook.