Meaningfully address climate change
The time for action is now.
We need a fundamental shift in our governing philosophy at the federal and state level in Texas so we can aggressively address global climate change as the threat to our lives and national security it is. I strongly support transitioning this country to carbon-free, 100% renewable energy. I'm also in favor of a fully modernized electrical grid -- and of setting a goal of achieving it by 2035.
After Hurricane Harvey, Texas deserves leaders who do not ignore the science on climate change. It's an issue that threatens our national security, that threatens our survival, and threatens our kids’ and grandkids' future. We have to rejoin the Paris Climate Accords so that America can lead as a world clean energy superpower. We can create good-paying jobs, slash carbon pollution at home and around the world, and ensure that no Americans are left behind as we scale up a clean energy economy.
Roger Williams introduced a bill to repeal the EPA standards that improve fuel economy, and co-sponsored a bill to ‘terminate’ the EPA. Why would he do this when air quality in Texas is among the worst in the nation. In terms of exposure to particulate matter (2.5 microns or less), Texas ranks 42nd. (http://www.americashealthrankings.org/Measures/Measure/TX/air.)
The American Lung Association grades the air quality of different areas. Travis County got a grade of D, and Johnson County got an F (these were the only areas in Dist. 25 that reported enough data to grade). That’s unacceptable.
My commitments include: Ensuring that Congress funds the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) so that they can provide necessary climate science research, and ensuring that these institutions remain independent.
Texas is already a leader in wind energy. We can continue to lead there, striving to put Texas at the forefront of an America that is a clean energy superpower, all while creating real, good-paying jobs right here in Texas while reducing carbon pollution at home.
We also have to re-examine our attitude about runaway real estate development. The devastation that Harvey visited upon Houston wasn’t just the effect of superstorms that are becoming more powerful and more frequent with global warming--it was so much worse because for too long, local authorities turned a blind eye to sensible land use policies.
I also plan to support efforts under way to impose a carbon-fee-and-dividend, so that we can significantly reduce CO2 emissions and, according to a REMI study detailing the effects of this dividend, add millions of jobs to the economy.
My commitments include:
- Keeping fossil fuels in the ground wherever possible so we can transition to 100% renewable energy;
- Ensuring that Congress funds the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) so that they can provide necessary climate science research, and ensuring that these institutions remain independent;
- Rejoining the Paris Climate Accord; Imposing a carbon-fee-and-dividend--with an initial fee of $15/ton on the CO2 equivalent emissions of fossil fuels, escalating $10/ton/year, imposed upstream at the mine, well or port of entry;
- Investing in clean energy infrastructure, innovation, manufacturing and workforce development to make the U.S. economy more competitive and create good-paying jobs and careers;
- Amending the tax code to encourage renewable energy investment.