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Pingree, McEachin, Haaland, Dingell, Blumenauer & Tonko Introduce 100% Clean Economy Bill with Support from Mainers, 150+ Members of Congress

Washington, November 21, 2019

Congresswoman Chellie Pingree (ME-01), along with Representatives A. Donald McEachin (VA-04), Deb Haaland (NM-01), Debbie Dingell (MI-12), Earl Blumenauer (OR-3), and Paul Tonko (NY-20), today introduced the 100% Clean Economy Act of 2019. This legislation sets a nationwide goal of achieving a 100% clean energy economy by 2050, defined as net-zero climate pollution across all sectors of the United States’ economy. The bill was introduced with over 150 original co-sponsors.

“In Maine, climate change is not coming down the pipeline—it is already at our door. July was the hottest month ever recorded, our oceans are acidifying, and the Gulf of Maine is warming at a rate 99% faster than any other body of water on the planet. It is imperative that we transition to a 100% clean energy economy with clean jobs and insulation from the worst impacts of climate change. For our children and grandchildren, we must create systems now that mitigate the effects of the climate crisis for all communities and workers,” said Pingree.

“Across the nation, states including Maine are leading the way with ambitious goals to accelerate the transition to a clean energy economy. Now, it’s time for Congress to set our country on a path toward a lower carbon future that will curb harmful air pollution, create new jobs, and strengthen our communities. Mainers are lucky to have Congresswoman Pingree championing bold climate solutions that will protect our health and the natural resources that support our state’s economic growth. We thank her for supporting the 100% Clean Economy Act.” – Emmie Theberge, Federal Director at the Natural Resources Council of Maine.

“As farmers and small business owners, our livelihood literally depends on the weather. We’re already being impacted by changing weather patterns and more extreme growing conditions. But it’s not just agriculture, it’s the whole state, and every sector of Maine’s economy that will be affected by climate change. We thank Congresswoman Chellie Pingree for sponsoring the 100% Clean Economy Act. This bill will accelerate our nation’s transition to a strong clean energy economy, which will not only address climate change, but build more resilient communities.”– Melissa Law, Owner, Bumbleroot Organic Farm in Windham 

“Climate change is a real and present threat to shellfish aquaculture, and to communities that are economically tied to the sea. The evidence is easy to find, in sea level rise, the increased frequency and severity of storms, and worsening of algae and bacteria outbreaks that harm crops. Climate change is also linked to the increasing acidification of the oceans, imperiling the livelihoods of all who harvest shellfish. The 100% Clean Economy Act is a bold, ambitious, and important step towards a solution to the climate crisis.” – Bill Mook, Owner, Mook Sea Farm in Walpole

“Investments in clean energy are critical to combatting the harmful health effects of air pollution and climate change. Maine has a higher-than-average rate of asthma that is exacerbated by downwind polluting industries. We must deploy every tool we have to accelerate the just transition to a clean energy economy in order to address climate change and protect the health of our communities. Thank you Congresswoman Chellie Pingree for supporting the 100% Clean Economy Act.” – Rebecca Boulos, Executive Director, Maine Public Health Association 

“Maine has more than 6,000 lakes and 30,000 miles of rivers and streams. Clean, healthy waterways are vital to our day-to-day lives and our economy, generating $4 billion for Maine’s economy annually and sustaining 52,000 jobs. While Maine's lakes have some of the highest water quality in the nation, they are at a tipping point as they face on-going declines. Those declines are unlikely to reverse in the face of current climate change impacts. More frequent storms that flush nutrients into lake water, earlier ice outs and warmer water that foster longer growing seasons for algae, and more hospitable conditions for explosions of invasive exotic plants and animals are already on our doorstep. That’s why immediate action on climate is so important, and we applaud Congress in taking steps to address climate change.” –Susan Gallo, Executive Director, Maine Lakes Society

To ensure the United States acts quickly, the 100% Clean Economy Act of 2019 directs federal agencies to use all existing authorities to put the United States on a path toward meeting the achievable 100% clean energy economy goal while remaining technology neutral. The legislation directs the EPA to evaluate agency plans, make recommendations to strengthen them as needed, and report each year on progress toward a 100% clean energy economy. The bill also creates an advisory committee, composed of a broad range of stakeholders, to provide recommendations on one or more interim goals. 

The 100% Clean Economy Act of 2019 lays out principles for federal agency action, including, but not limited to:

  • improving public health, especially for low-income and rural communities, communities of color, Tribal communities, and other vulnerable populations;
  • enhancing job creation and ensuring an equitable transition for workers in industries and communities affected by changes in the economy;
  • providing benefits for consumers, small businesses, and rural communities; and
  • preparing communities for the impacts and risks of climate change.

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