My first inclination was to vote no on Proposition 127, the renewable/clean energy initiative. In fact, I announced this at several candidate events and was challenged by concerned activists. I explained that I absolutely supported the idea of a goal to have 50% of power generated in Arizona come from “clean” sources by 2030. What I didn’t like was that this would be written into the constitution of the state. I believe that we should not change the constitution to reflect long-term planning that has so wide-ranging impact on our state economy and lifestyle. The initiative is a blunt force method that allows for little flexibility and more importantly removed responsibility from our elected officials. Our elected officials are precisely the people that should make this decision.
That was then (about three months ago when prop 127 got on the ballot). Now it’s a bit of a different story. I really dislike the no campaign’s rhetoric and tactics. It is dishonest and self-serving for APS and other utilities that seem to put their own interests way above those of the state and their customers. Through misinformation and a ridiculous comparison to California, the no campaign has tried to scare consumers with a possibility of $1,000 utility bills. What finally pushed me over to a yes was the publication of the United Nations panel on climate change report which shows an urgent need to act now on combating climate change.
You can read more about the report here: https://www.ipcc.ch/pdf/session48/pr_181008_P48_spm_en.pdf
A yes vote will start the process of preparing for a future where coal, oil and natural gas play a smaller role in our electric generation and that solar and wind will be a cost-competitive alternative. LD 14 provides lots of land and the proper weather conditions to support a significant expansion of solar and wind generation in our area. Passage of proposition 127 will make Arizona a leader in renewable clean energy and will also boost solar and wind businesses in the state, creating more good paying jobs.
I still have concerns that without getting Sandra Kennedy and Kiana Maria Sears elected to the Corporation Commission there will be no significant enforcement of proposition 127 even if it wins. I would have liked some of the vast amounts of money going to support a yes vote go to state candidates that support the long-term goals of 127.
I have changed my mind and will be voting YES on proposition 127.