QUOTES OF THE WEEK:
“Colorado does not have the luxury of existing in a fictitious economy… The consequences of climate change are costing Coloradans billions of dollars each year, and this cost is only expected to increase.”
— Colorado Senator Michael Bennet describing one way in which his state experiences climate change
“Preserving Indiana’s natural beauty for future generations of Hoosiers is not a partisan issue. The Land and Water Conservation Fund is a commonsense program.”
— Indiana Senator Joe Donnelly reminding us about the importance of the expiring LWCF not just to his state, but to the entire country
“Rick Scott in my opinion has frustrated efforts to solve this problem from the beginning of his term and only got some religion on it late in the game because it finally dawned on him that this was a political issue.”
— Eric Buermann, former general counsel for the Florida GOP, discussing Rick Scott’s poor environmental record
LCV IN THE NEWS:
OUTSIDE THE BELTWAY:
LCV’s state affiliates are hard at work protecting the environment and fighting climate change in the states. Here’s what people are reading across the country:
Colorado Pols (CO): Kelly Nordini Takes Over at Conservation Colorado
Wisconsin Gazette (WI): Wisconsin conservationists urge Ryan to protect parks
Detroit Free Press (MI): Bill Schuette’s environmental hypocrisy
Nevada Appeal (NV): Conservationists push back against wilderness proposal
67 DAYS UNTIL the midterms, and the green wave is building momentum. This week’s primaries in Arizona and Florida saw major victories for LCV-endorsed candidates, the first step to building a Congress that will take on the threat of climate change.
KOCH CASH POURING IN: The oil billionaire Koch brothers unveiled a set of House candidates their fossil fuel cash plans to prop up this November — and all eight are on LCV Victory Fund’s watchlist. Some, like Reps. Erik Paulsen (MN-03) and Peter Roskam (IL-06), might have trouble squaring their Big Oil support with their attempts to deceive voters about their support for public lands and climate action.
THE GOLDEN STATE: California is close to obtaining 100 percent of its energy from clean, carbon-free sources by 2045. You read that right. After a successful vote by the state legislature this week, California awaits Gov. Jerry Brown’s signature to secure its title as our most ambitious and aggressive ally in the fight against climate change.
THERE’S MORE! The California Assembly passed yet another climate-friendly bill this week, one that would ban the development of new offshore drilling infrastructure. In doing so, California will join a larger group of coastal states opposing Trump’s plan to hand over the Pacific to oil companies. Witnessing the popularity of the move, certain pro-drilling representatives have been put into a tight spot as they seek reelection in California this year — we’re looking at you, Reps. Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48), Steve Knight (CA-25), and Mimi Walters (CA-45).
SPEAKING OF WALTERS: Mimi Walters is locked in one of the toughest reelection battles in the country, and her anti-environmental voting record isn’t playing so great. With California’s wildfires continuing to rage, Walters joined a letter acknowledging that the fires are “being fueled by climate change” and calling for action — which would be great, if Walters hadn’t continually voted against climate action herself.
DIRTY DOZEN: Our supporters have spoken — Florida governor and Senate candidate Rick Scott was voted the very first member of LCV Victory Fund’s 2018 Dirty Dozen. Through his blatant denial of climate change, going so far as to ban the words from official Florida government communications, he definitely deserves this “honor.” Hats off to you, @RickRollRickSct.
NOT CONVINCED? In case you need more evidence that Scott deserves the first spot on the list, check out this Washington Post article explaining how his terrible environmental record has contributed to the current toxic algae and red tide crises, which are costing Florida’s economy and damaging the ecosystem.
DIRTY DECISIONS: LCV is doing our part to illuminate some of the darkest corners of Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh’s pro-polluter record. Ahead of his hearings next week, catch up on our “Dirty Decision of the Day” series here.
DID SOMEONE SAY KAVANAUGH? Senate Democrats this week signed a letter requesting access to Kavanaugh’s environmental records from the Bush White House. Without this information, the letter says, his confirmation will be “illegitimate.”
ONE MONTH OUT: With the Land and Water Conservation Fund set to expire at the end of September, some in Washington are promoting a false choice between funding national park maintenance projects and reauthorizing and funding LWCF. The reality? We need to address both LWCF and the maintenance backlog, as LCV’s lands team explains in a new blog post. These programs work in tandem and need robust, dedicated funding.
SCIENCE, NOT SECRETS: In a thinly-veiled attempt to limit the regulatory power of the EPA, Scott Pruitt moved to ban the agency’s use of reliable human health studies, calling them “secret science.” But studies using medical data are critical. Recently, they were responsible for estimating that the Dirty Power Scam will lead to the premature deaths of 1,400 people each year.
HAVE NO FEAR… Actual scientists are here. The scientific community has flooded EPA inboxes with complaints about the Pruitt proposal. Even officials at the Department of Defense have lined up against it, understanding the importance of health studies and ensuring that they continue to play a role in EPA decision making.
SHILLING FOR A DRILLING: As deputy chief of staff to Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, Downey Magallanes has advocated for drilling in U.S. outer continental shelf waters and cutting safety standards for oil and gas operations. Now, she’s going to work for BP. Not that we blame her, of course… We hear their government affairs department offers amazing health benefits.
CHICAGO-ING GREEN: After winning $109 million in a lawsuit against Volkswagen, Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner plans to invest the settlement in green public transit initiatives, including cleaner trains and buses as well as electric car charging ports.
WEEKEND READ: August 2018, will be remembered as a precarious time for climate policy. Here’s why.
SEPTEMBER 4 — Kavanaugh confirmation hearings begin
SEPTEMBER — Trump administration is expected to release their Dirty Water Rule, which will severely rollback Clean Water Act protections for waterways our families and communities depend on
SEPTEMBER 30 — Expiration of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), the nation’s best parks program
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