From Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley
The fact that global warming is real and is caused by carbon dioxide shouldn’t need stating in 2017 — but apparently it does. Yesterday, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said “I would not agree that carbon dioxide is a primary contributor to global warming.” All climate science, including statements from NASA, NOAA, and Scott Pruitt’s own agency – the EPA – says otherwise.
This denial of the facts is extremely concerning — especially coming from the man in charge of protecting us from the pollution that results from carbon emissions. If Pruitt denies that human activity contributes to climate change, how can we trust him to ever work to reduce pollution from the burning of fossil fuels? How can we trust him to protect our children from the disastrous effects of climate change that are already being felt today in communities across Oregon?
The answer is: we can’t. If the EPA fails to adequately protect our vital clean air and water, it’s all the more reason for us to speak out and act on climate. That is why I’m getting ready to introduce the 100 by 50 Act to transition our nation from fossil fuels to 100% clean and renewable energy by 2050. Committing to clean, renewable energy will not only help save our planet from the disastrous effects of climate change, but will also create jobs — especially in rural America. Rural property owners earn $245 million each year from leasing land for wind farms, and solar energy companies created 200,000 jobs across the country just last year.
Despite what Scott Pruitt believes, the facts on the ground are all too clear: carbon dioxide and fossil fuels are already damaging our health, environment and economies and it’s only going to get exponentially worse. We need a bold vision – to make a clean energy future. The 100 by 50 Act lays out the path we must take to make that transition.
It’s said we are the first generation to feel the effects of climate change, and the last to be able to do something about it. We cannot let a fossil fuel-beholden, science-denying administration stand in our way.
All my best,