Legislators Call on President to Finalize Carbon Standards for Power Plants
Denver, CO – Today, the National Caucus of Environmental Legislators (NCEL) delivered to President Obama a letter signed by 302 state legislators from 40 states, including 16 Colorado legislators, urging him to prioritize tackling global warming in his second term. The move was applauded by Environment Colorado and other environmental advocates across the country.
“This is what leadership in fighting global warming looks like,” said Anneli Berube, Field Organizer with Environment Colorado. “From devastating wildfires, to extreme drought, far too many Coloradans have been harmed by the early effects of global warming. We have the solutions to address this problem, and today these legislators are speaking out and urging the President to follow through on his pledge to put these solutions to work.”
Colorado State Representative Jonathan Singer, who represents Longmont, added that “we need to preserve our way of life in Colorado. Failing to address climate change equals failing to protect our communities from the crippling drought and raging forest fires that have sadly come to define our summer seasons.”
“We applaud the Obama administration for having finalized fuel efficiency standards and proposing limits to the amount of carbon that new power plants can emit in his first term,” said NCEL Board Chairman and Maryland Delegate Jim Hubbard. “Legislators from across the country are urging the President to continue his focus on climate change and use his office to spur the nation to act.”
The legislators cite recent extreme weather events such as Superstorm Sandy, western wildfires and increased frequency of drought among reasons for President Obama to prioritize addressing global warming. They argue that no U.S. community is immune to the effects of global warming, especially when you consider that, in addition to Superstorm Sandy, which left as much as $50 billion dollars of damage in its wake, there were 10 other extreme weather-related disasters in 2012 that have surpassed the $1 billion threshold in damages. In Colorado, it is estimated that last year’s wildfires caused over $450 million in damages.
The legislators joined a growing chorus of small businesses, religious leaders, environmentalists and public health advocates in urging President Obama to make tackling global warming a priority. The group called on the President to finalize proposed standards limiting carbon pollution from new power plants and to propose additional standards to address our nation’s aging power plants.
NCEL is a non-profit, non-partisan organization formed by state legislators for state legislators to network and promote environmental protection.
Note: The list of legislators, including a number from Colorado leadership, who signed on can be found here.