Greenhouse Gas and City Council Essay

Submitted By homobob
Words: 829
Pages: 4

Community Participation Report I participated in Riverside City Hall’s meeting for the Community Facilities District on Wednesday the 4th of December. At this meeting many officers presented reports on what has recently happened around the community. They focused primarily on the provision of renewable and low-carbon transportation fuels to commercial users. This is to promote participation in the resolution of the City council program, which requires oil refineries and distributors to ensure that the fuel they sell in the California market meets the established declining targets for greenhouse gas emissions. These emissions are measured in carbon dioxide-equivalent grams per unit of fuel energy sold for transportation purposes, and they earn renewable fuel credits from compressed natural gas usage. I learned that in 2011, CFD contacted the city to discuss how Riverside could earn low carbon credits as an owner of a CNG station, and bank those credits for sale to companies who need credits. The City is being offered the same points that were offered to the Riverside Transit Agency. An example is the LCFS credit per year- system. For every 1 million gallons CNG used, revenue of approximately $150,000 is created annually. The Finance Committee decided to let the City Council look at the deal and decide whether or not to approve of the agreement. The members of the Riverside City Council are community leaders who listen to all citizens of the City, prioritize plans and projects, allocate funds, and make decisions essential to the future of Riverside. The California Government Code authorizes the City Council to delegate the responsibilities for making and receiving disbursements and receipts and for investment of surplus funds to the City Treasurer. The City Treasurer acts as the fiscal agent for the City.
The meeting led me to believe that America has an elite democracy, even in the states. An elite democracy is one in which the people do not decide on direct individual matters, but, rather they elect representatives to decide on matters in their place. The Finance committee may decide on choices they believe to be more beneficial towards the people such as the GHI fuel/credit system, but it is the people who work in state government jobs that make the fuel decisions. This situation does have some aspects of popular democracy though; because the Community Facilities committee will use the credit and money to improve Riverside if the powers agree to put the system in place. This shows that the Riverside City Hall believes in a popular democracy, but is forced to act as an elite democracy. They look out for everyone’s point of view using committees such as Human Resources to ensure the organization is staffed with the proper resources to achieve its goals and objectives that are most beneficial to the people. However, given a clear lack of participation by the people, they remain an “elite” group of decision makers.
Attending this meeting made me realize that I need to get more involved with not only federal politics, but state and city politics as well. I believe that many…