Climate Change, Energy, and Environment
It is clear that climate change is real, it is affecting our communities today, and it will get worse if we do not take aggressive action to cut our greenhouse gas emissions. We are seeing hotter temperatures lead to worse wildfires and draughts, rising sea levels and warmer water cause major flooding and devastation to fishing economies, and more extreme weather events are becoming more common. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), which is the United Nation’s scientific research body for climate change, has concluded that in order to stave off the worst effects of climate change we must get our economy to net zero emissions of greenhouse gases by 2050. This conclusion was the result of thousands of research papers from scientists all over the world. Climate change is truly a global problem, and the United States must be a leader guiding the world to a cleaner energy future and a healthier planet for future generations.
I am working with my colleagues on the Energy and Commerce Committee to craft legislation that will get us to a 100% clean energy economy by 2050. The Committee is holding briefings and hearings with stakeholders to find the best path forward. As I help draft this bill, I believe we must focus on the biggest areas of emissions: transportation, the power sector, and industry. Here are the steps I am taking to move us toward a 100% clean economy by 2050.
- Pushing forward my bill, H.R. 2096, the Energy Storage Tax Incentive and Deployment Act, to extend the investment tax credit to energy storage, which is key to unlocking the potential of intermittent renewable energy sources like wind and solar,
- Extending tax credits for clean energy sources like wind, solar, hydro, and geothermal,
- Working to support Pennsylvania’s largest producer of clean power, nuclear energy, and to find a solution for safely storing nuclear waste.
- As a member of the Fuel Cell Caucus, I am working to provide strong funding for research programs for promising fuel cell technology, which could be used by heavy duty vehicles,
- Deploying more clean energy vehicles, especially buses so our kids and communities are subject to less air pollution,
- Investing in public transportation, like the proposed Bus Rapid Transit line in Pittsburgh so that we have less traffic and cleaner air.
- Funding research that will find the technologies to make our more carbon intense industries cleaner,
- Supporting efforts to research and deploy carbon capture and storage technology as we must find a way to capture and store carbon, even after we stop emitting it,
- Funding programs that would help homeowners and whole cities make their buildings more energy efficient since less energy consumed means not only a cleaner environment but more money in your pocket.
Public lands, endangered species, and vulnerable ecosystems all play a vital role in our economy, and in the fight against climate change. We must protect vulnerable habitats and preserve our national treasures. Here are some of the things I am working on in the 116th Congress:
- Protecting public lands, national parks, and monuments from mining and drilling,
- Opposing the expansion of offshore drilling,
- Opposing logging in roadless areas of our national forests,
- Working to permanently reauthorize and fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF),
- Protecting endangered species and preserving the planet’s wildlife.