Climate change is a global emergency and recent studies from organizations like the International Energy Agency (IEA) make it clear that we are running out of time to course correct and save our planet. The Executive Director of the IEA summed it up like this: “Governments’ current plans could bring us to catastrophic implications for the climate of this planet […] We will need to see great political will around the world.”
While the Trump Administration has let us down time and time again by withdrawing from the Paris Climate Accords, rolling back critical policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions e, and turning his back on science, SEEC PAC members have continued to step up.
For example, SEEC member Raúl Grijalva introduced the American Public Lands and Waters Climate Solution Act, a bill that has been referred to as “one of the most aggressive climate bills of the current Congress.” This bill would achieve net-zero greenhouse gas emissions on public lands by 2040. It would also increase royalties on oil and gas and use the funding to support communities impacted by a transition away from fossil fuels.
And we’ve continued to stay vigilant during the COVID-19 pandemic. Amid this public health crisis, Donald Trump has rolled back Obama-era automobile fuel efficiency standards. The weaker Trump Administration rule would allow cars to emit nearly a billion tons more carbon dioxide over the lifetime of the vehicles than they would have under the Obama standards.
Because auto exhaust is one of the leading contributors to air pollution and global warming, SEEC members are fighting back against this rollback. SEEC Co-Chair Rep Doris Matsui has led the way with the introduction of the Clean and Efficient Cars Act of 2018, which would preserve the Obama-era fuel efficiency standards. And SEEC members are also leading the fight to transition our country to zero-emission vehicles. SEEC member Rep. Mark DeSaulnier has introduced the Clean Corridors Act, which would invest in infrastructure to support the advancement of hydrogen fuel cells and electric vehicles. And SEEC member Rep. Peter Welch is leading legislation to extend the electric vehicle tax credit for 10 years, which would help make these vehicles more affordable for more Americans.
As IEA Director Dr. Fatih Birol said, we need to see great political will to get the change we need, and that will come from you and citizens around the world who demand it and support it.