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Sierra Applauds President's Historic Climate Change Action Plan

Date : Tue, 25 Jun 2013 11:57:54 -0400

Action Plan

For Immediate Release

June 25, 2013

Contact Jeff Tittel, 609-558-9100

Sierra Applauds President's Historic Climate Change Action Plan

Today President Barack Obama announced his administration's next steps for building a legacy of action to fight the climate crisis. The plan includes new energy efficiency standards for federal buildings and appliances, scales up responsible clean energy production on public lands with an ambitious new commitment to power 6 million homes by 2020, and uses the full authority of the Clean Air Act to cut dangerous carbon pollution from power plants.This is an ambitious plan by the President using a lot of the tools he has to reduce greenhouse gases from power plants and promote energy efficiency standards.There are other initiatives that he will need congressional support on but this is the first step in a long overdue national climate action plan.

"This is great news for the people of New Jersey who have been so devastated by Superstorm Sandy and other weather events.This is an important proposal for our future in dealing with climate change.The President is proposing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and prevent future climate events and climate adaption and mitigation which is critical.We applaud the President and his actions to stand up on climate change. This is happening at a very important time as we continue to rebuild from Sandy and we are trying to do it in a more resilient way,"
said Jeff Tittel, Director, NJ Sierra Club."The President is showing his personal leadership here to get something done and the public needs to stand with the president so the fossil fuels in Congress do not try to undercut what he is doing."

Jeff continued, "A few weeks ago when the President came to New Jersey he did not mention climate change. However his actions today are a loud voice that resonates in New Jersey and across this country on the need to reduce greenhouse gases and deal with climate change.The President's speech today is even more critical in New Jersey because Governor Christie has not recognized climate change and sea level rise so it is more important here for the federal government to step up on these issues. When I met with him on the May 28th in Asbury Park he said a climate initiative was coming soon and he kept his word."

"Climate change is a real legacy issue for the President and the country.But fracking and Keystone Pipeline would undermine the legacy.Nevertheless, the President's plan gives us hope that he will cement his climate legacy and protect future generations by ending destructive oil drilling in the Arctic, rejecting dangerous nukes, halting mountaintop removal, abandoning dirty fossil fuels in favor of clean energy - and by making the critically important decision to reject the dirty and dangerous Keystone XL pipeline," said Jeff Tittel.

Overall this is a major speech and initiative for the President that will protect our environment while creating jobs.Once you start working in that direction and reducing carbon and promoting clean energy we can transition beyond fossil fuel.Energy efficiency standards for buildings, automobile fuel standards, promoting renewable energy, and adaptation for sea level rise are all very important things.We hope they will do even more to promote renewable energy as part of this plan.

"At a time when you have House Republicans attacking science and the EPA it is important for the President to stand up and outline a plan on climate.Maybe Governor Christie should learn from the President and stand up for science, the environment, and promoting green jobs," said Jeff Tittel.

While the President is announcing these plans on climate Governor Christie is going in the opposite direction.Governor Christie instead of moving forward with sea level rise and climate change adaptation planning, has removed New Jersey from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). RGGI would have lowered greenhouse gas emissions from our state's power plants and also provide funding for clean energy projects. In addition each year the Governor continues to raid the Clean Energy Fund, money which would go towards renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. The Governor cut the DEP Office of Climate Change and has stopped progress under previous administrations to implement hazard planning to address sea level rise. The Governor says he is too busy to think about climate change while making appearances on the Late Show and Morning Joe and doing reelection campaign fundraisers.

"This is the change New Jerseyans have been waiting for on climate.
  President Obama is finally putting action behind his words, which is exactly what the Sierra Club, our 2.1 million members and supporters, and coalition partners have worked mightily to achieve. Today, we applaud him for taking a giant step forward toward meeting that goal,"
said Jeff Tittel."By committing to establish new energy efficiency standards for federal buildings and appliances, scale up responsible clean energy production on public lands with an ambitious new goal to power 6 million homes by 2020, and use the full authority of the Clean Air Act to cut dangerous carbon pollution from power plants, the President is stepping up to reduce the climate-disrupting pollution that is destabilizing our climate while threatening our economy and endangering our communities and families with extreme weather and dramatic sea level increases."

Kate Millsaps
Conservation Program Coordinator
NJ Chapter of the Sierra Club
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Received on 2013-06-25 08:57:54

New Jersey Sierra Club, 145 West Hanover St., Trenton, NJ 08618, USA
tel: 609 656 7612, fax 609 656 7618
or email Nicole Dallara, Outreach Coordinator, at nicole.dallara@sierraclub.org

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Page Last Modified 7/24/2013

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