Opinion

Letters to the editor: Readers clash on Measure G opinions

Don’t believe Yes on G scare tactics

Do we really want to shut down an entire industry and destroy more than 200 good-paying jobs? Do we really want to eliminate $2.3 million in annual tax revenue that goes toward our public education and safety? If Measure G passes, these will be the consequences.

Don’t believe the Yes on G campaign’s scare tactics. Our drinking water is perfectly safe. What’s really at risk are the 230 good-paying jobs that local families depend on. What’s in danger is the $1.5 million in tax revenue generated from oil and gas production that funds our local schools. Major employers like Diablo Canyon are shutting down or leaving San Luis Obispo County. We can’t afford to push more jobs out.

Measure G goes too far. It’s opposed by a bipartisan coalition of small businesses, farms, ranchers, educators, elected officials, and public safety groups. Organizations like the San Luis Obispo Cattlemen’s Association, the Tri-County Central Labor Council, the Tri Counties Building and Construction Trades Council, the Central Coast Taxpayers Association, and even Assessor Tom Bordonaro all oppose Measure G.

It’s unusual for such a large and diverse group to agree on something, and they all agree: Measure G is a poorly written initiative that does more harm than good. Please, for the well-being of SLO County, vote no on Measure G.

Jax Garrett, San Luis Obispo

Don’t take a chance with our drinking water; yes on G

In 2016, a Stanford study proved that hydraulic fracturing (fracking) can introduce harmful chemicals into groundwater. After fracking began in rural Wyoming, residents were even advised to stop drinking the water from their private wells. One couple reported their livestock getting sick from drinking well water, and eventually had to sell their sheep — the only alternative to using bottled water or letting them continue to die.

Fracking has already been banned in three U.S. states and many European nations. While some argue that the practice can be done more responsibly, I ask — is it really worth taking a chance with our drinking water?

Recent advertisements frame Measure G as shutting down oil production. But this is not true. Measure G allows existing oil production to continue in SLO county, while ensuring that fracking and other harmful extraction practices won’t ever start.

SLO County has been already been investigated thoroughly for potential fracking sites. That’s why oil companies and out-of-county special interest groups are spending so much money to fight Measure G. It’s up to us, as voters, to take the safety of our water into our own hands.

Gloria Wilson, Paso Robles

ECOSLO endorses Measure G

The Environmental Center of San Luis Obispo County (ECOSLO) is a local nonprofit organization that has worked to protect and enhance the well-being of SLO County residents and the natural environment since 1971.

ECOSLO strongly supports Measure G, the voter-qualified initiative to protect our county’s groundwater and thus our economic powerhouses, agriculture and tourism, by holding oil and gas drilling operations at their current levels. The measure enjoys widespread local support, having been placed on the ballot with the signatures of over 20,000 county residents.

Measure G explicitly states that all existing oil production and maintenance activities can continue unchanged. Unfortunately, the initiative is the target of a massive, Big Oil-funded disinformation campaign originating outside SLO County and intended to stifle local attempts to control pollution. The oil industry’s claims of lost jobs, tax revenue and reduced funding for schools and emergency services are completely unsupported by any evidence.

The current proposal by Sentinel Peak Resources to expand Arroyo Grande Oil Field operations by 481 wells would increase groundwater use (now 1.25 million gallons daily) and toxic waste water injection tenfold, potentially contaminating Edna Valley and Five Cities water supplies.

Help protect our fragile, limited water resources from industrial pollution. Vote Yes on G!

Board of Directors, ECOSLO

Support Measure G and Rep. Carbajal

I envision a day when there won’t be any oil truck rollovers, gas pipeline explosions or coal ash full of toxic poisons spilling into a river. There will be no air pollution making everyone sick or oil spills killing sea life. Picture abundant sunshine and wind providing us with all the clean electricity we need. Please keep these things in mind when you vote this November.

We need to stop expansion of the fossil fuel industry and move our county and this country to clean, cheaper energy sources. Measure G is a small step in that direction for our county. Don’t believe the lies of those against it, claiming it will stop all current oil and gas production costing loss of jobs and revenue. It won’t. Isn’t there a law against lies on campaign signs? If not, there should be. Measure G will stop new drilling and fracking. So vote yes for Measure G and vote to keep Salud Carbajal in Washington to continue his work on the House Bipartisan Climate Lobby so that he and other like-minded people can use facts and sense to move our government and our country forward. Please get out and vote!

Gail Cheda, San Luis Obispo

Don’t be misled by No on G campaign

Measure G is a non-partisan issue, even though the Big Oil companies and their consultants are trying to make it partisan. One has to only follow the money (go to SLO County Clerk Recorder’s website and search Campaign Disclosure Statement.) The issue is simple: Do we, as county residents, want to gamble our water quantity and quality to allow future well drilling/fracking? It shouldn’t matter if we are conservative, liberal, moderate, etc.

As a past fire chief and an elected official in our county, I know and understand the importance of the quality and quantity of water for our residents. Over 50 oil/gas wells have been drilled in North County and are awaiting the rising price of oil to make them profitable to develop. There are 481 new wells planned in South County. Let’s not allow the oil expansion in our county that uses millions of gallons of water and contaminates and depletes our ground water.

Learn the truth by reading the ordinance for yourself; go to www.protectslo.org. Don’t be misled by the millions of dollars being spent by Big Oil on slick mailings that are filled with lies. Do you want clean water? Then vote Yes on G!

Greg O’Sullivan, Templeton

Undecided about Measure G? Think of the future

I am a 16 and a junior in high school and I have never before seen this much political involvement among my peers, strictly because of Measure G (and none of us can even vote yet!).

To all who press for a no vote on Measure G because of economic reasons or job losses, I urge you to look at the big picture, the picture that involves my life and the lives of those who have not yet been born who will live with on a planet affected by the choices we make today.

While voting no on Measure G might help the short-term economics in SLO county, it is not a sustainable solution, not for my generation or any generation that comes after me.

Wesley Weisenberger, Arroyo Grande

Don’t be fooled by ‘progressive’ voter guides urging No on G

When you think the industry-funded, fake news spewing No on G campaign has gone too far, they prove once again they can go even lower. As an informed, progressive voter, imagine my surprise when I laid my eyes on the supposed “Feel the Bern, Progressive Voters Guide” only to find they encourage a no vote on Measure G, stating that it will ‘shut down existing oil and gas production.”

Any educated voter knows that this is an outright lie, but I’m concerned about those voters who don’t have the time to research the issue and rely on publications like this. A quick look at Bernie’s Our Revolution webpage confirms this group’s position is not aligned with the true Feel the Bern groups who endorse a Yes on G stance.

These paid ad slates have been exposed throughout the state as a sham. This fake ad shows the type of people who are at the heart of their campaign. I encourage all voters to get behind the citizen-backed campaign to protect San Luis Obispo County and vote Yes on G!

Rose M. Smith, San Luis Obispo

What ‘Yes on G crowd’ really wants

An October 18 Tribune article reported: “Yes on Measure G proponents have acknowledged that the language of the initiative is confusing.”

I’m starting to wonder if the confusing language is on purpose because even Measure G supporters are confused about the initiative’s language. We’ve heard them give conflicting explanations about what kind of oil well maintenance Measure G does and doesn’t allow. Measure G leader Charles Varni’s rhetoric makes it crystal clear he hates oil and gas production and wants to shut it down in San Luis Obispo County.

I’ll bet dollars to donuts that if Measure G passes, Measure G supporters will file lawsuits claiming some routine maintenance activity at the Price Canyon facility violates Measure G and seek to shut it down — their current campaign promises notwithstanding.

Don’t believe Varni and the Yes on Measure G crowd: If it passes, oil and gas production in SLO County will shut down, and that is exactly what they want. Vote No on G.

Edie Knight, Atascadero

Measure G: An ‘attack’ on our way of life?

Measure G is an attack on the American way of life! It is the thin edge of the wedge, a slippery slope! Please consider the plight of our nation’s oil companies, smeared for the Exxon Valdes disaster and, more recently, for some hoax called climate change.

In the true spirit of America, these companies create unimaginable wealth for a relatively small number of people. First it will be Measure G and then worse will follow. And what will the rest of us get in exchange? Instead of gurgling pipes, geysers of toxic water and crude, and stream beds filled with sludge, it will be a horror. Imagine a landscape of oak trees and hills, of clear water canyons and noble sycamores! Indeed, how will Paso, Pismo or SLO ever achieve sister city status with Oildale or Taft should this measure pass?

People, we simply can’t allow trivial environmental concerns to threaten the rich and powerful.

Please, dear reader, think carefully about Measure G.

Branden Leach, Oceano

It’s time to say ‘bye’ to dirty oil

It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature. By using scare tactics to try to defeat Measure G’s limitations on new oil wells in SLO County, the oil companies are missing a great opportunity. They could become community heroes by converting to the development of sustainable, clean-energy production now, such as wind and solar, which will protect the future of our water and air quality.

Instead, absentee oil executives are putting their short-term profits over the needs of local residents who must live with the side-effects of the drilling (and transport out of SLO county) of dirty oil: polluted air and water.

Where do the oil industry magnates (around the world) think their grandchildren and great-great-grandchildren will hide, when eventually water is undrinkable and the air is not safe to breathe?

Please vote yes on Measure G, to protect the future of all of us.

Jeanie Class, Oceano

Yes on Measure G, Prop 10

Expensive propaganda is flying fast and thick against Proposition 10 and Measure G, and in favor of Proposition 6. Let’s go over it:

It’s all lies that Proposition 10 will hurt seniors, veterans and so on. It will in fact help most folks in those and other categories, especially poorer people, students, etc. It will corral rent-gouging property owners and big developers. Rents — both commercial and residential — are insanely high. Creating more supply is good, but we must also go after those who take greedy, unfair advantage. Rents must be reasonably controlled to create balance. Vote for it.

Measure G will not stop present fossil fuel production. Gasoline, diesel fuel and the rest will still be there. The idea is to phase it out — yes, deliberately and steadily — and make way for clean and renewable energy sources. In the meantime, we must prohibit the filthy and destructive fracking process which has already poisoned the water and the land in many places. The Big Oil, big money lies are working overtime. Don’t be fooled. Vote for it.

The right-wing flak about gasoline taxes is more of their usual bunk. Ditto their call to attack them through Proposition 6. Vote against it, unless you love bad roads and potholes.

Robert McHale, San Luis Obispo

Chevron is creating a fantasy land

I feel guilty about all the free entertainment Chevron is providing every time I turn on my TV or go online and get to watch their “No on Measure G” soap opera on every channel. They’re obviously spending millions on it, and it shows in the handsome production values.

The script is kind of repetitive and not very believable but hey, look at Game of Thrones. I just get lost in the fantasy of barbers and housewives suddenly concerned about the profits of oil companies. (In the real world, of course, I’m voting yes on Measure G.)

Is there a Chevron Channel I can subscribe to? Or did I do so accidentally and forgot?

Joan Carter, San Luis Obispo

Whose kids are more important?

With regard to the Oct. 21 editorial on the Opinion page of The Tribune, I thought the argument to vote Yes on Measure G for our children widely missed the mark. If curtailing oil production is the goal, shouldn’t we consider the children of our neighbors who work in the oil fields who will slowly lose their jobs through attrition?

What about the children of our economically struggling neighbors as we all shoulder more of the property tax burden, as the value of oil holdings gradually diminishes? And as the price of fuel continues to incrementally rise? What about the children of the heritage land owners who will lose their royalties? Don’t all of our neighbors’ children count?

The cost of living in coastal California is already extremely high, making it difficult for many families to get by. This measure only makes it more difficult, and fails to provide balance with any tangible benefits.

Larry Landis, Morro Bay

Another reason to vote no on G

I want to thank The Tribune and Monica Vaughan for the front page article on Sunday, Oct. 21, “Both sides stretch the truth on vote to ban oil drilling.” The last paragraph on page 6A clearly indicates the average citizen should vote no on Measure G.

“Yes on Measure G proponents have acknowledged that the language of the initiative is confusing. Ultimately, the full implications of the measure, if it passes, won’t be known until after it’s litigated in the courts.” Surely we do not need another law that the experts who wrote it don’t understand clogging our courts.

Richard Riggins, Pismo Beach

We need jobs. Vote no on Measure G

I would like to encourage SLO residents to vote no on Measure G.

I am a third-generation San Luis Obispo resident, living here for over 67 years. Our family established San Luis Mill and Lumber Co. and supported building a better economy.

With the closure of Diablo Canyon, a loss in local taxes to the county and jobs lost from that closure, a yes vote on Measure G will threaten our economy even further. More than 230 local jobs will be lost. It is difficult for families living in our county to find well-paying jobs.

Oil production in our county is heavily regulated, with 20 local, state and federal entities ensuring safety and environmental protection. No hydraulic fracturing is taking place in San Luis Obispo County. Measure G is too broadly written.

California produces the cleanest oil in the United States. Shutting down oil production does not reduce consumption. Oil and gas not produced in California must be imported from elsewhere (Russia and Saudi Arabia).

The responsible solution is to produce oil we need here in California as we transition to a clean energy economy.

Please vote no on Measure G.

Lori L. Lawson, San Luis Obispo

Disappointed in Trib’s endorsement

I was disappointed that The Tribune took a position of support on Measure G. Implementation of Measure G would result in the shut down of existing oil and gas production in San Luis Obispo in the near term. Arguments to the contrary are due to a lack of understanding of oil production or are disingenuous.

Enactment would lead to the loss of well-paid head of household jobs in San Luis Obispo County. Why would our community so casually throw away 230 well paid jobs? This on top of the Diablo Plant shut down. And for what? The small production of oil and gas in San Luis Obispo will be easily replaced in autocratic countries such as Saudi Arabia and Venezuela that have little regulation of industry resulting in more global pollution than if produced here.

Passage of Measure G will result in expense to the county in litigation expense, loss of revenue to local businesses and the county, and negligible if any environmental benefit to SLO or the world. Vote no on Measure G.

Bill Almas, San Luis Obispo

Don’t be confused by Big Oil

I urge readers to inform themselves on Measure G, and not be confused by the Big Oil misinformation. Measure G does not affect current operations, but gives SLO County people the power to rescue their most precious resource: water. The arguments put forward are designed to confuse voters. Measure G prevents using local water resources to fracture Monterey Shale and adding acid treatments to the ground in order to extract oil. It prevents these oil companies from working around the county approved plans for protecting our resources.

Drinkable water is necessary for life, for our survival. The risk of becoming another Flint, Michigan, is not worth it. Nor is Measure G likely to make a dent in America’s oil production.

Vote yes for Measure G.

Jim Carlisle, Atascadero

Here’s why I’m voting yes on Measure G

I live in rural SLO County, and the water for my household comes from a 300-foot-deep well. The idea that a fracking company would be allowed to pump chemical-laced water into the earth and potentially contaminate our well is unacceptable. Fracking is a direct threat to my family’s health and our property value, and the same holds for the vast majority of rural residents of this county who depend on ground water. Please join me in voting yes on Measure G to protect our water!

Michael Costello, San Luis Obispo

Here’s why I’m voting no on Measure G

There is no fracking in San Luis Obispo County, and even Measure G supporters admit the county’s geology doesn’t support fracking. What Measure G will do is shut down existing oil and gas production in San Luis Obispo County, along with the jobs, tax revenue and economic activity it supports.

Measure G would lead to the loss of 230 good-paying jobs directly related to oil and gas production in SLO County — and even more jobs in local businesses that depend on the oil and gas industry. Those jobs are vital to the people who hold them and the families that depend on them. It’s baffling that Measure G activists are willing to sacrifice those jobs to ban something — fracking — that isn’t happening in SLO County.

Oil and gas produced here is consumed here — not exported abroad. Shutting down oil and gas production here will increase our dependence on imported foreign oil from countries with poor environmental and human rights regulations. Oil and gas produced in SLO County is done so under the highest regulations in the world and provides more than 200 local jobs. Let’s keep it local. Vote no on Measure G.

Joanie Brown, San Luis Obispo

Say no to Big Oil

Chevron has chosen to spend $4 million influencing public policy in San Luis Obispo and the Central Coast. That seems like an absolutely absurd amount of money here, but of course for Chevron that is chump change. Clearly there is a big picture narrative. Why would Chevron, with its investments in Russia and Saudi Arabia (spanning the past seven decades) advertise to our community on an anti-Saudi Arabia and Russia platform? This makes absolutely no sense and is the epitome of organized hypocrisy!

This capital flow aimed at disrupting the organic political opinion of SLO is incredibly concerning and I am shocked we are not questioning this. The platform of the no on Measure G movement is largely grounded upon economic impacts. Whilst there may be marginal negative economic impacts, ensuring a future with an economy is paramount. This economic impact may be greater to Chevron than to SLO civilians.

Why else would they be influencing our local politics so vigorously and disruptively? It seems a rather obvious deficit in the organization’s “corporate social responsibility.” I wish our council and leadership would engage this malevolent act within the political sphere.

We must reject corporate control of our culture! Reclaim SLO!

Dominic Chequer, San Luis Obipso

Measure G is ‘junk science’

Measure G is based on bogus assumptions. There is no fracking in SLO County and there won’t be, the geology doesn’t support it. G aims to ban something that won’t happen anyway. Oil isn’t found in aquifers. Oil wells are typically 1000s of feet deep; water wells are 100s. Finally, fracking, where it is used, doesn’t cause earthquakes. Quakes start miles deep, not 1000s. Measure G is junk science personified.

G is a thinly veiled attack on fossil fuels. Oil and gas will a part of our energy supplies for the foreseeable future. As a nation, we can produce our own or we can buy it from Mideastern despots, that’s the choice we have.

As for the 19 gallons of water used to produce one barrel of oil, we could divert that and grow 19 almonds.

Ed Cobleigh, Paso Robles

Protect our green county by voting yes on Measure G

As a recent graduate of Templeton High School (Go Eagles!) I can tell you one thing for sure: I love green.

Home to me is signified by the green of my alma mater, the green of our shaggy football field and the green of San Luis Obispo County’s extensive natural environment. To preserve this environment for myself and future generations, I stand with my fellow 20,473 SLO residents who signed the anti-fracking ballot initiative that has become Measure G.

With our votes, fracking’s harmful effects on drinking water and wildlife habitats will not be felt in SLO county. This November, vote yes on Measure G. Let’s protect our beautiful, green home.

Meagan Helm, Templeton

Join other jurisdictions in rejecting fracking

Please join me and the California Nurses Association in voting yes on Measure G.

Some other California counties that have already banned fracking include San Benito, Monterey, Santa Cruz and Mendocino. If San Luis Obispo County votes yes, we will be the 7th county to reject fracking. Other fracking opponents include New York State, which banned it four years ago, and Colorado has statewide initiatives to end new oil exploration. France, Brazil, Argentina and New Zealand have already done the same.

When you vote yes, you are giving a huge gift to our local residents — the comfort of helping protect our water and environmental quality, and of preventing greater health risks associated with fracking technology. You are helping to avoid not only the raising of childhood asthma rates, but also the raising of the Earth’s temperature and the frequency of earthquakes. You are also helping to promote renewable energy across our state, the nation and the globe. Even though the oil industry spent over $5 million in Monterey County to defeat a fracking ban, their wise citizens were not fooled and still said no!

Thank you for voting yes on Measure G.

Kalila Volkov, Morro Bay

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