‘Corrupt and broken’: Berkeley resident announces pro-environment run for governor

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Amanda Ramirez/Staff

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Berkeley resident Michael Shellenberger announced his plans to run for California governor Thursday at a ClimateTECH conference in San Francisco, bringing new energy to an already hotly contested race.

Shellenberger, a nuclear energy advocate, is the founder of a research and policy organization called Environmental Progress that works to secure “clean power and energy justice.” He also co-founded the Breakthrough Institute, a research center that uses technology to promote human and environmental development.

The gubernatorial race for California will include independent candidacies by Shellenberger, Hilaire Fuji Shioura, Andy Blanch and Joshua Laine. Other politicians such as Gavin Newsom, Antonio Villaraigosa and John Chiang have also confirmed their campaigns for governor.

“I think both parties are corrupt and broken,” Shellenberger said. “We need to start fresh with a fresh agenda.”

Shellenberger’s campaign addresses nuclear energy and the idea of “ecomodernism,” which promotes nuclear energy and city development, according to Shellenberger.

“I’m pro-city, pro-tech and pro-nuclear,” Shellenberger said. “If we want to save nature, we need more cities.”

The campaign will formally launch in January. According to Shellenberger, he plans to seek the “student vote” and hopes to get student environmental activists involved in his campaign.

Recently, Shellenberger advocated against the California Public Utilities Commission’s alleged plans to shut down Diablo Canyon Power Plant because, he said, it is a major source of clean energy.

“I’ve been here for now 22 years,” Shellenberger said. “I’m sickened and I want to turn it around.”

Contact Ella Jensen at [email protected] and follow her on Twitter at @ellajensen_dc.