|Richmond Chamber of Commerce Rolls Over for
March 17, 2008
With the number of people laying down for Chevron, there won’t be much room left on the floor.
I received the following email today from the friendly Richmond Chamber of Commerce, which included Chevron’s do-it-yourself email kit the Chamber is using to pimp for Chevron and lobby City Council and Planning Commission members. Unfortunately, as a Chamber member, I am helping to pay for this scam, and I’m not very happy about it.
If you click here, you have the opportunity to participate in a lie. You are offered only one message to send about the Chevron Energy and Hydrogen Renewal Project:
Dear Planning Commission & City Council:
As a Richmond resident, I support the Chevron Energy and Hydrogen Renewal Project.
The project replaces existing equipment with new equipment that is more energy efficient and includes enhanced environmental controls – reducing overall emissions at the Richmond Refinery.
The improvements will help fund services for Richmond including public safety, street repairs and youth programs. And more than 1,200 good-paying construction jobs – most are expected to be filled by union labor – will be created.
I urge you to support the project when it comes before the Planning Commission for approval.
Here are the facts:
Claim: The project replaces existing equipment with new equipment that is more energy efficient and includes enhanced environmental controls.
Fact: This is actually correct. The purpose of the project is to make Chevron more profitable. State of the art equipment and energy reduction contribute to profitability.
Claim: …reducing overall emissions at the Richmond Refinery.
Fact: The EIR states: “Operational activities associated with the implementation of the Proposed Project would increase air pollutant emissions of volatile organic compounds by potentially significant quantities. This impact would be significant and unavoidable both for the Proposed Project and cumulatively as well. Proposed Project activities could result in an increase in greenhouse gas emissions from the Refinery.” In fact, the project will result in 900,000 metric tons of greenhouse gas annually.
Claim: The improvements will help fund services for Richmond including public safety, street repairs and youth programs. .
Fact: Chevron is doing everything in its power to bleed the City of Richmond dry financially. Chevron is currently appealing its property tax assessment that would, if successful, cost Richmond tens of millions of dollars, much of which has already been spent and would have to be refunded. Just last year, Chevron voluntarily changed the way its utility user tax is computed, reducing its taxes by about $4 million. Despite repeated requests, Chevron has not provided any details about its claim regarding “new tax revenues.” See Chevron Unable to Back Up Claims Made in Letter to KPFA, July 21, 2007.
I don’t have a problem with people supporting this project, so long as it includes mitigations that protect the health, safety and welfare of the people of Richmond. In its present form, it doesn’t do that.
Background on the project can be found in the sources listed below:
WANT TO RECEIVE TOM BUTT E-FORUM AND OTHER ACTION ALERTS ON RICHMOND POLITICAL AND COMMUNITY ISSUES DELIVERED TO YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS? EMAIL YOUR NAME AND EMAIL ADDRESS AND/OR THE NAMES AND EMAIL ADDRESSES OF OTHERS WHO WOULD LIKE TO BE PLACED ON THE MAILING LIST AND THE MESSAGE "SUBSCRIBE" TO firstname.lastname@example.org. COMMENTS, ARGUMENTS AND CORRECTIONS ARE WELCOME. TOM BUTT IS A MEMBER OF THE RICHMOND CITY COUNCIL WHEN OPINIONS AND VIEWS EXPRESSED, WITHOUT OTHER ATTRIBUTION, IN TOM BUTT E-FORUM, THEY ARE THOSE OF TOM BUTT AND DO NOT REFLECT OFFICIAL VIEWS OR POSITIONS OF THE CITY OF RICHMOND OR THE RICHMOND CITY COUNCIL UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED. VISIT THE TOM BUTT WEBSITE FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ABOUT TOM BUTT'S ACTIVITIES ON THE RICHMOND CITY COUNCIL: http://www.tombutt.com. PHONE 510/236-7435 OR 510/237-2084. SUBSCRIPTION TO THIS SERVICE IS AT THE PERSONAL DISCRETION OF THE RECIPIENT AND MAY BE TERMINATED BY RESPONDING WITH “UNSUBSCRIBE.” IT MAY TAKE A FEW DAYS TO REMOVE ADDRESSES FROM THE DISTRIBUTION LIST
Judy Morgan [mailto:email@example.com]
At the last Board meeting of the Richmond Chamber of Commerce the Board approved support of the Chevron Richmond Refinery project. Please take the time to review the message below and forward your comments in support.
Richmond Chamber of Commerce
Priselac, Camille (ccaj)