Environment

Issue Summary

The drive for environmental sustainability is changing the global landscape. Declining resources, increasing demands for transparency and easier access to information, rising consumer and government expectations and intensifying competition mean the rules of the game have permanently changed.

California has a long history of enacting innovative environmental policies, with Silicon Valley serving as the standard-bearer in the quest to develop the programs and technologies necessary to help surmount our most pressing environmental challenges.   The Silicon Valley Leadership Group is proud to work at this intersection of innovation and policy – helping foster solutions that benefit our region, state and nation. Our top policy priorities are corporate environmental sustainability, water infrastructure financing, and climate change.

Past Wins

No on Prop 23 – Protecting California’s Green Economy

The Leadership Group played a key role in the victorious 2010 campaign to defeat Proposition 23, serving on both the Executive Committee and Steering Committee for the campaign.  Prop 23 would have done enormous damage to California’s leadership of the green economy. The Leadership Group was actively engaged throughout the campaign, including early advocacy in Sacramento, CEO and senior executive briefings, media engagement, hosting high-profile public events, recruitment of coalition members and campaign fundraising.

State Water Policy – Historic Reform

The Leadership Group, together with our R.E.A.L. Coalition partners, helped secure passage of a historic water policy and bond measure package in 2009.  The comprehensive deal represented a major step towards ensuring a reliable water supply for future generations, as well as restoring the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and other ecologically sensitive areas.  The package established a Delta Stewardship Council, set ambitious water conservation policy, ensures better groundwater monitoring, and provides funds for the State Water Resources Control Board for increased enforcement of illegal water diversions. The bond, which was the centerpiece of the package, still has not been put before the voters. The Leadership Group is currently working with a number of organizations to address water infrastructure financing that will have broad public support.

Green Chemistry Policy – Transparent, Rational & Scientifically-Based Decision Making

The Leadership Group played a key role in the state’s landmark green chemistry initiative, which aims to reduce or eliminate the use of chemicals that persist in the environment and  pose a threat to public health in favor of safer alternatives.  The Leadership Group’s Green Chemistry Task Force provided the Department of Toxic Substances Control with dozens of specific recommendations, many of which were adopted and then later codified in AB 1879 (Feuer) and SB 509 (Simitian) – both supported by the Leadership Group and signed into law by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2008.