Bob Filner and San Diego’s Democratic city-council majority have a lot of problems to solve — including global warming, in the opinion of one well-connected nonprofit. According to a recent lobbyist disclosure filing by the Environmental Health Coalition — the so-called environmental justice group that backed Filner’s election with major cash — the chief priority on the city’s agenda should be “adoption of a climate action plan.” The measure needs to “meet state goals, protect public health, and create green jobs,” the filing adds.
The environmental group is also against the so-called Quail Brush power plant, proposed by giant Cogentrix Energy for ten city-owned acres north of State Route 52 off Sycamore Landfill Road. The EHC has a strange bedfellow in its Cogentrix opposition: San Diego lobbying giant Southwest Strategies, LLC, retained by giant developer Pardee Homes — which usually finds itself at the other pole from environmentalists — to kill the plant. That’s according to an October disclosure filed by Southwest principal Al Ziegaus, the former San Diego Tribune reporter turned local political kingpin.
Cogentrix enjoyed the support of Republican ex-mayor Jerry Sanders, whose administration assembled the details of the massive power plant, as well as another generation project in North City, deep within the recesses of the mayor’s inner office. The Cogentrix power project, currently said to be on hold but always lurking for possible revival, would presumably face tougher sledding with Democrat Filner, a personal friend of Environmental Health Coalition chief Diane Takvorian.