Washington, D.C. Feb. 7, 2019 – Chair Raúl M. Grijalva (D-Ariz.) today announced his support for the Green New Deal resolution unveiled by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.), Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), and other Congressional Democrats. Grijalva, who yesterday led the first in a monthlong series of hearings on climate change in the Natural Resources Committee, said he is excited to work with supporters of the plan throughout the 116th Congress to reduce U.S. emissions and build a more sustainable economy.
Yesterday’s hearing featured testimony from Gov. Roy Cooper (D-N.C.), Gov. Charlie Baker (R-Mass.) and a panel of youth, science, and environmental justice witnesses urging Congress to move quickly, in partnership with affected communities, to advance meaningful federal climate policy. You can see video highlights of the event at http://bit.ly/2DXTaX9. A video previewing the Committee’s monthlong hearing series is available at http://bit.ly/2DgiN3V.
“What I heard yesterday is what I’ve been hearing for years: this economy needs to be cleaner and more sustainable if we want a livable future,” Grijalva said today. “The Green New Deal is the right framework for the work we need to do, in Congress and across the nation, to reduce our fossil fuel use, create green jobs, and protect our country and our planet for the long term.”
The Green New Deal touches almost every aspect of the Natural Resources Committee’s jurisdiction. Commitments to preservation of open space, protection for sources of clean water, and preservation of natural ecosystems, all included in the Green New Deal, align with planned legislation protecting wilderness, expanding national monuments, preserving forest lands, and conserving coastal areas.
The Green New Deal’s focus on inclusivity, especially for underserved and indigenous communities, echoes Grijalva’s long-standing commitment to environmental justice and his decision to create a Subcommittee for Indigenous Peoples of the United States in the 116th Congress. Efforts to review the Endangered Species Act to strengthen protections for critical biodiversity, and to expand the environmental review process mandated by the National Environmental Policy Act to better account for potential climate impacts, will also occur in the Committee. A significant area not highlighted in the Green New Deal, but expected to be a focus of climate-related work in the Committee, is management of fisheries and other ocean resources.
“The energy behind the Green New Deal is truly inspiring,” Grijalva said today. “We got started yesterday with our first hearing, and we’re moving fast to build on this momentum. This Committee is already a center of climate policymaking in Congress, and with this resolution as our guide, our emphasis on climate action is only going to get stronger.”