Home Earth Day 2024: Lawmakers introduce bill to commemorate environmental actions
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Earth Day 2024: Lawmakers introduce bill to commemorate environmental actions

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Congresswoman Jennifer McClellan of Virginia and House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition (SEEC) leaders led 54 lawmakers in introducing a resolution to commemorate Earth Day 2024.

The resolution celebrates recent historic environmental actions to improve the health and wellbeing of our planet, while reaffirming the work that still needs to be done to achieve a habitable future for the next generation.

SEEC leaders are Co-Chair Doris Matsui of California, Assistant Democratic Leader Joe Neguse of Colorado and Rep. Steve Cohen of Tennessee.

“As a mother to two young children, I feel a deep responsibility to address the climate crisis and ensure a healthy, livable planet for future generations,” McClellan said. “I am fighting in Congress to combat climate change, supercharge our transition to a clean energy future, and advance environmental justice. This Earth Day, I am proud to build on the legacy of my predecessor, the late A. Donald McEachin, and help reintroduce this Earth Day Resolution to reaffirm our commitment to preserving our Earth, because we have no Planet B.”

Matsui said she has co-led the resolution in previous years with the late Congressman Donald McEachin and she continues to honor his legacy as a tireless advocate for the environment.

“Last Congress, we made historic progress in the fight against climate change with the transformational investments in the Inflation Reduction Act, the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and the CHIPS and Science Act — but there is so much more that we need to accomplish. Sustained bold action is critical to protect our planet for today and for future generations to come, as we increasingly see the direct and devastating impacts of climate change on our communities,” Matsui said.

Americans began to celebrate Earth Day 54 years ago.

“Today, as we face the real threat of climate change which is causing warmer temperatures, more severe weather events and severe environmental damage like melting glaciers, larger forest fires and coral reef bleaching, we must be dedicated to policies that will protect our air, water, and land to ensure a sustainable future for our planet. With the environment and climate change, it’s not about us, but it’s about the next generation,” Cohen said.

McClellan is a staunch climate and clean energy advocate. While in the Virginia General Assembly, she championed passage of the Virginia Clean Economy Act to make Virginia the first state in the South with a 100 percent clean energy standard. In Congress, she is a member of the Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition (SEEC), leads the Coordination for Soil Carbon Research and Monitoring Act, and cosponsors the A. Donald McEachin Environmental Justice for All Act. During her first year in Congress, McClellan led several congressional efforts to stand up for the environment and vulnerable populations, including letters to the Environmental Protection Agency to take strong action on particulate matter pollutionmercury and air toxics emissionsPFAS contamination, and more. She led members in calling on the Department of Energy to bolster and diversify its clean-energy work force and incorporate climate, environmental justice, and public health considerations into its process to determine if new liquified natural gas export licenses are in the public interest. Throughout 2023, she fought to protect vulnerable communities and public lands from the Mountain Valley Pipeline and Mountain Valley Pipeline Southgate Extension.

McClellan spoke on the House floor to commemorate Earth Day and celebrate the introduction of the resolution. Read the full resolution text here.

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca Barnabi

Rebecca J. Barnabi is the national editor of Augusta Free Press. A graduate of the University of Mary Washington, she began her journalism career at The Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star. In 2013, she was awarded first place for feature writing in the Maryland, Delaware, District of Columbia Awards Program, and was honored by the Virginia School Boards Association’s 2019 Media Honor Roll Program for her coverage of Waynesboro Schools. Her background in newspapers includes writing about features, local government, education and the arts.