tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN June 17, 2016 2:00pm-4:01pm EDT
saying this. when i grew up, we were in a very poor neighborhood. all my six brothers and sisters had asthma. people died early from cancer. i could name all kind of environmental things happening. we thought it was normal. doingk the things you are makes people aware that that is not normal. a lot of people don't realize there are some folks living in situations they should not. barbara lee talks about poverty. if you want to talk about poverty, if somebody is sick all the time, it is hard to have -- to move forward. i want to thank you for your advocacy. the other thing i wanted to ask , the president and congress hopefully will do things. i was wondering how much of this involves educating people so
they know that things can be better. ms. shepard: absolutely. grassroots education and training so that residents who live in your districts can come in and talk to you about these issues, can brief you and your staff about these issues, is crucial. we cannot have important localization without an informed -- informed residents. i would also say we now know asthma is not normal. more investment to the national institutes of health, the national institute of environmental health sciences has been crucial. the funding to the children's environmental health centers around this country has produced incredible research that has looked at the impact of air quality on children inter-generationally and on pregnant women, vulnerable populations. and has looked at the impact of air quality on asthma and heart disease. again, we now have the research.
we really know what the issues are. now we need the political will to transform our health. rep. cummings: thank you very much. thank you. [applause] ruffalo is an american .ctor is he here? mark ruthless: i am on skype -- mark ruffolo: i am on skype. i am joining you from the digital world today. rep. cummings: there you are. mark ruffolo: how are you? rep. cummings: real good. tok ruffolo: it is an honor be here with the d.n.c. today speaking about these issues, especially with the speakers you have lined up. many of them are my heroes. i am deeply honored to be here as a lowly, humble actor.
thank you for the chance to speak today. first, i want to recognize the democratic primary that honestly debated the choices we have in front of us. paths, different each of our candidates share our goal of 100% clean energy. this commitment gives me hope that as a party, we will not turn away from the challenges facing our country today. unlike others running for president, we will not turn away from each other. we will work together to solve these tough problems. for 100% of 100% our citizens. the old, dirty fossil fuel systems and dark money it pumps into our politics is a toxic mess killing more than 40,000 americans each year. them in arizona alone.
researchers estimate each american will save more than $8,000 -- $6,000 for people in arizona every year by moving to 100% clean energy instead of the billions of dollars being put into the pockets of the 1%. that wealth can be shared by all. on warsless money spent to protect our dirty fossil fuels and more money on schools, roads, and our communities. the good news is we don't have to dream anymore about wind, water, and sun powering our lives. stanford, ucom davis, and cornell have proven that 100% clean energy is absolutely possible today. it is cost effective, and it is possible with the technology we have today.
went today is the cheapest form of energy available in the united states. solar is cost competitive. the result of making that switch saved.y $600 billion ok? not to mention the gains we will make in fighting climate change, but there is an economic argument to be made. and i hope the d.n.c. can understand it. $600 billion saved. we will have new industries that flourish. tens of thousands of lives saved a year. and a nation where every state develops its own local, god-given, harvestable, and never-ending power source. no longer are we sending our energy dollars out-of-state and out of country. way,nly thing in our blocking us from this transition, is political leadership and courage. it simply is no longer an economic issue or a technological issue.
we are not 20 years away from being able to do this. it is happening now. the party can today join the c.e.o. of apple, general motors, the mayors of san diego, california, greensboro, kansas, and hundreds of thousands of iner, everyday heroes buffalo, des moines, and miami. americans are making 100% clean energy happen for employees, neighbors, and families across the country right now, today. as a party, we can pick up that pace, making sure every american household, school, and business has access to affordable clean energy. all while creating more good, stable jobs than we lose in the process. by millions. 100% clean energy is not only possible, it is happening. it is a personal issue for
everyone who pays utility bills, who has to go to work, for myself, when i want to go and play in streams and rivers and have clean air and clean land and clean water. family, i want them to grow up in a clean environment like you do, like every american does. the quicker america makes the transition, the quicker the rest of the world will follow us. america leads the way. we all know this. this primary season has shown us the people of the country crave bold leadership. and a move to 100% clean energy is not only bold, it is also smart. smart for our health. smart for our economy. smart for protecting our water and air. and smart for global security. the future of democracy lies in our ability to transition away from old, dirty fossil fuel.
the democratic party should be at the frontlines of this transition. we deserve to have 100% clean energy for 100% of our people. that means everybody. this also deals with an environmental racism as well. economic racism. that is why i hear to urge the d.n.c. to adopt the goal of keeping 100% clean energy from wind, water, and sun by 2015 -- 2050. the time is now. thank you. [applause] rep. cummings: thank you. failed to give you a proper introduction so i want everybody to know who you are. thank you -- mark ruffalo: thank you. rep. cummings: mark ruffalo is an american actor who has starred in multiple critically acclaimed roles. during his acting career, he has
received numerous awards and nominations, including a bafta at oscar nomination for his role in the 2015 drama, "spotlight." mr. ruffalo always has a long history of activism and humanitarianism and has utilized his position to speak out in support of lgbt issues, clean water initiatives, and environmental preservation. the is the cofounder and board member of the solutions process -- project. he is also the founder of water sense, a nonprofit dedicated to clean water, rooted in the belief that access to clean water is fundamental -- a fundamental human right. any questions? yes. mr. mckibben. add heibben: you could started turning green in his role as the hulk.
[laughter] mr. mckibben: mark, just to make absolutely clear, sometimes there are people who have described natural gas as clean energy for america. could you describe what you mean by clean energy and could you talk about the campaign you help wage about fracking in new york state, ultimately successful with governor cuomo's cooperation? mark ruffalo: sure. for a long time, people in the environmental movement felt natural gas was going to be the bridge fuel to the future. but what we came to find out and what science has consequently proof is natural gas is a gangplank to a more rapidly changing climate. natural gas is 100 times more damaging a greenhouse gas, heat trapping gas, than co2 in a 70-year period, which makes it
particularly dangerous. to keep seem to be able it from leaking no matter how hard we try and where we try to do it. we thought weins were making by transitioning to natural gas have basically exploded in our faces. accidenthink it is any climate change is -- has accelerated much beyond what many of our climate scientists were saying, while at the same time we were building out this night -- giant natural gas infrastructure. the matter of fact is we don't need natural gas. scientists tell us we have to keep 80% of our carbon in the ground. we also have a technologically -- cap technologically advanced to such a point we can leapfrog over natural gas.
we can hang glide to the future instead of carrying natural gas is a bridge. which leads me to new york and why new york is such an important example of how to wage this coming struggle. in new york, we had the promise of natural gas. this was during the natural gas boom when there was scant information on how bad natural gas actually was and how dangerous fracking was for communities. we were getting anecdotal information. but we did not have all the science yet. at the same time, we understood we need power. we want to live in a modern world. people don't want to shut off their lights. they don't want to turn off the air conditioning. they want to live modernly. we had to come up with a way forward that was equitable for people and equitable for our governor. as the health studies were coming in and show natural gas and fracking were not everything
they were cracked up to be and were quite dangerous, we were proving to the governor we could take this nation -- the state to 100% renewable energy. he adopted that. since then, new york state is now leading the nation in the buildout of solar, wind, and water generation. we are moving faster than any state in the nation. and we don't exactly have all of the sun you have an arizona, by the way, or in florida, but we are doing it. we are doing it because we created a space by saying we will move to 100% renewable energy. that gave politicians a place to move. citizenry azens -- place to move. it enlightened people to a feature that is bright, that has promise, that promises jobs. that does not send our kids overseas to fight wars, energy worse. people are linking this together. the problem has been fighting
climate change is people think they have to turn off their lives. if we could find an alternative like renewable energy and moving to that quickly, they don't have to turn off anything and we will create more jobs and spread the wealth. rep. cummings: we are going to take two questions. andesentative reece [indiscernible] >> thank you for your testimony. i wanted to follow up on what was said by some of the committee members earlier. and i know earlier this week, in ohio at progress ohio, our chairman called in and this was an issue that came up from those who attended. the issue of environmental, racial, environmental justice. i guess my question to you is, we have heard about flint, we have heard about low income communities and the injustice. we have heard about so many people, particularly african americans get cancer or m.s.
my mother had m.s. and the kind of just deal with it. they don't come together and say, what caused these things? candidates are firm on the issue of environmental justice. but should there be some mention question mark and if so, what is that, to deal with racial and environmental economic justice? what would you recommend? i think there is a disconnect, particularly in urban and low income areas about what is environmental justice. they just deal with all the ailments that come from it. mark ruffalo: in my travels, what i have seen is there is an enormous amount of environment and racism -- environmental racism. it is through the people on the frontlines dealing with processing plants or drilling or transportation of these fossil
fuels. it has been my aim to empower those people. i think they are putting it together. in los angeles, you have hundreds of drilling wells happening in neighborhoods of color. there is an organization, stand .a., which stands against neighborhood drilling. they are informed. when you lift up their voices, they do a very good job of speaking for themselves. they carry a credibility that i don't have. i don't live there. create somehave to sort of system where we have to rescue these people. but these people, they want to fight for themselves. but we don't give them the tools to do it. we push it off to big organizations or we hope politicians are going to do it.
but there is a vibrant, grassroots movement building around these issues. to eachthey communicate other through this view full democratizing tool called the internet, god, please keep it open and free for all the people. we are seeing movement happening where there was not movement and connections where it was not happening. what i think, and what van jones is theady on to, opportunity, the economic opportunity by making the transition. i will make some materials available to you. millionill have a $3.5 ton in jobs by transitioning 100% renewable energy. that is a net gain. any job lost in any other sector because of this transition will be gained manyfold.
i think the more you can tie it to jobs, opportunity, economic weortunity, and the places are moving out in solar, we are seeing eleanor was amount of people of color coming into that field. it is a great paying field. it has upward mobility. it is the fastest growing economic plane in the united states, where all the new wealth will be. i think it is a two-pronged thing. offer the jobs so they understand the connection, so we understand our connection to this change. and give them the tools to fight. mark.ummings: thank you, i have to get to miss shaper -- ms. schaefer. rep. schrader: thank you so much. we are all upset you are not here in person. call me crazy, but what i don't
quite understand is if we have the answers and we are all on the same page and upset about the same issues, why isn't this moving faster? is outs as if the horse of the barn, so to speak, and we are chasing it. things are happening faster than we expected. i have a home in florida. i know sea levels are rising. i see what is happening on the beach. but it is happening all over, what you're talking about. we do need solar energy. we do need to tap into wind energy. why aren't we doing it? what is the holdup? we are not doing it fast enough. mark ruffalo: look, our country was built on fossil fuels. it is a 70-year-old system that has been codified politically. that multiple
regulations have been built around protecting. the fact we have such might around the world is because we adopted fossil fuels quicker than anyone. our military might has been tied to it. we have a deeply entrenched system that is very old. we are going to have to fight. we are going to have to make people really uncomfortable. our leaders are going to have to be strong. they are going to have to fight. it is literally just creating a space where people become so uncomfortable that they have to move off the position they are in. there is so much fossil fuel money pouring into our political system. it is corruptive. it simply is. i think we have got to fight. i think our leaders have got to take off the gloves and tell it like it is and be brutal and
make people uncomfortable. i don't think there is any other way to do it at this point. engage the public and get them to march. when they march, make the media take notice. rep. cummings: thank you. thank you very much. [laughter] -- [applause] tp. cummings: dr. susan iernney. she is an expert on energy policy and economics, specializing in the electric and gas industries. she has consulted to companies, governments, nonprofits, and other organizations on energy markets as well as economic and environmental regulation and strategy. welcome. >> thank you so much. it is great to be here. i am not a movie star. but i spend all my time on clean energy issues these days. ernney. is sue ti i recently moved to colorado.
i am a rockies grow after being in boston for 35 years. that is quite a big head change, but it is nice to be in the west. want clean,icans reliable, and affordable energy. think is inws, i the past, certainly since the obama administration has come in, we have been able to get all three of those things happening. i think that is driven by a combination of factors. one of them is the price pressure natural gas has placed on coal, which has to mislead driven coal out of the market and the carbon emissions associated with that. the advent of renewable energy, we just heard how strong it has been coming on. that is also contributing to this reliable, affordable, and clean energy mix we have. clearly, environmental regulations addressing toxic emissions from power plants have
been a few minutes effect -- tremendous effect. let me give you a couple of the signs of progress we have seen in the past few years. that ire all metrics hope won't bore you too much, but they are things we have done since the obama administration has committed to washington. we are 12% down in terms of carbon dioxide emissions. we have had a threefold growth in wind generation. a 30-fold growth in solar power generation. those are tremendous. renewable energy and smart grid technologies on the wires that enable integration of renewables, those together have attracted almost $450 billion in the last few years. the renewable sectors with smart grid investments are the fastest-growing energy-related part of the job creation.
lots of progress. all of this has happened at a time when electricity prices in real terms are lower than they prior to the obama administration coming in, and we have had world-class reliability. that provides access to energy in a tremendous way. part of the story is also that we have made huge gains in energy efficiency, buildings, appliances, vehicles. that is -- has also contributed to the story i just described. the igo fuel economy, thanks to the administration, and other representatives in washington, has decreased rapidly after being flat for two decades. that is a tremendous increase. the increase in the value proposition for americans who have saved billions of dollars associated with these investments in energy efficiency. 2008,compared to
americans get 13% more growth -- gross domestic product out of their electricity dollars. we have seen a much better injection of efficiency. thanks to things like the clean power plan, things like the fuel economy standards which are slated to bring in historic reductions in use of gasoline, we will continue to see this platform of progress going forward. all of those things have helped to provide the united states with the credibility and leverage that helped us see the in-store deal in paris -- historic deal in paris. we have had tremendous progress about that. i encourage the platform committee very respectfully to recognize the gains we have had and fight together to defend against the pushback we are seeing on the clean power plan,
on fuel economy standards, on methane emissions control regulations. i encourage everyone around the table to work together to defend against that plank. meeting the paris commitments will require accelerating the transition we have already seen begun in the united states. we have to do so in a way that ensures affordable and reliable supply of those energy resources and products and services americans demand. and we have to do that in a way that ensures no one is left behind. i am a principled pragmatist, that means we have to use all the tools we have available. it, personally would love we don't have a magic lever in this particular area. to meet our clean energy and climate goals, we have to have smart federal standards, buildings, appliances, vehicles. we need appropriate signals to
investors in markets. and we need sound investment in infrastructure and innovation. personally, i think it is very important to defend against backsliding on the climate progress we have seen to date. to me, that means we have a very strong commitment to ensuring that safely operating existing nuclear plants continue in the mix. nuclear plants today represent almost 2/3 of the zero carbon emitting electricity in the country. we have already seen losses in vermont and other places around the country. another announced today in the middle of the country. every time one of those plants retires in the real world, that is being replaced with a fossil fuel generation. prematurely retiring such plants creates -- will create a much bigger challenge than we have already got. i think the federal government
has so much to look forward to and continue to do in working with states and localities. we have heard today about the kinds of progress those groups have made in this area. and they continue to provide us with tremendous examples of the laboratories of democracy. and they, with the support in washington, can be the engines for change in this new energy economy. we need to increase federal investment in clean energy infrastructure. that includes electricity transmission as well as mass transit. we need to invest in research and development for zero carbon resources into the future. that would include the direction of advanced nuclear and carbon sequestration. democrats have so much to offer in terms of leadership on these issues. i really hope we can keep the fall.house blue this
too many republicans deny climate change or they doubt americans' ability to address these challenges we have been hearing about. they ignore the impact of fundamental market forces on the that is seeinges this shift to a cleaner economy in rapid fashion. democrats know american ingenuity and entrepreneurialism is fully up to the task. i hope you will work together to continue our leadership in transforming this nation's clean energy economy. thank you for your service. [applause] booth.mmings: mr. mr. booth: you said you are not an advocate of being a magic bullet. we have to write a platform that is going to be persuasive to the american people. do you think -- if you could
describe it for us, help me here. if there is a way for us to simultaneously commit the democratic party to the ambitious goals some of the prior witnesses have properly called us to grab onto. not just the changes implied by the paris agreement but much and at the same time not communicate to 70 workers and working families that we are throwing them under the bus in the transition. there is a path to achieve those goals and preserve the livelihoods of people who are otherg in electricity and branches of the economy. can't tell you i heard every single word you said but i have the just. the acoustics are not great so i apologize. i think that goes to my point
that i think we have to make tremendous progress on this urgent issue of climate change clearly. we operate in a world in which energy is in the hands of the private sector in the united states. we need to make sure that we send signals to investors and to workers to make the changes that we are describing. there is big progress but we still need to keep all those tools there because there are a newety of jobs in the economy and we need to transition in a way that works for people -- working people around the country. >> that will be our last question. >> thank you for your testimony. agreed with many things you said in your testimony. one area we will have to agree to disagree is nuclear power.
senator sanders as you know has been a strong opponent of nuclear power. one of the main reasons is where do you store nuclear waste? we still have not resolved that issue. there was -- i know there was a indian powerh the nuclear plant in new york which is 25 miles away from new york city where 2 million people live. there have been many errors that have been found to have happened at that plant. i think one of the main questions that i have to you is the question i just run up, where do you store the nuclear waste of our nuclear powered facilities? you point on a tremendously challenging problem. it happens to be something i have been looking at for 30 years and we have a continuing
challenge politically of addressing that issue. i think there are approaches. nuclearw we are storing waste at 99 sites around the country. that is where we are storing it. said, like senator sanders -- i butchered his name and i apologize. for many years i was adamantly opposed to your power. -- nuclear power. i was of an age where there were tremendous protests surrounding nuclear plants. the carbon problem that we have globally is what changed my mind on this issue. and the nuclear waste that exists at the existing plants is existing already. we have to figure out how to results it. identifyas moved to
safe, in place storage today compared to one i first started 30 years ago but we need to have a permanent solution eventually. retirementpremature of safely operating nuclear plants would be, it would put us back so far on our climate goals. >> i am very pleased to be joined by carol browner. you have a question? ask my apologies. -- >> my apologies. a run.out for a hea
and this willken heal. thank you so much for joining us and thank you for all of your work. i too took the same journey on nuclear. for a something i opposed long time but i took on climate and the challenge and the dangers of climate and it occurred to me that i simply could not oppose a carbon free source of energy at this point in time as we transition. can you talk a little bit about -- that isat the something that is really challenging as we try and transition away from certain types of energy. how do we maintain baseload while we bring in the new other carbon free sources of energy. nuclear fleethe of 99 reactors around the s to third -- two
generation.e energy those plants tend to operate around the clock. whenever they have fuel its is around the clock with 95% reliability. one of plant goes out the next day all around the country the thing that gets tuned up as a fossil fuel power plant. it is a swing fuel. calculations i have done unfortunately indicate that in that baseloadce amount of supply you really have to come up with orders of magnitude more investment in renewable energy just to replace it. 40%wable wind might have a as opposed to 95% output for every piece you put in the
ground. solar is close to less than 20%. four times 26ve times to eight times investment in those in order to replace something that is going off-line. we need to make forward progress so i would like to see us building a transition on these reactors that enables forward progress that we have already seen on cost productions and renewables. replacing on that scale is hard in terms of backsliding. thank you so much for the honor. >> anthony rogers right. the policy and organizing director, he has taken part in a variety of progressive organizing campaigns
free years. he worked as a policy analyst and urban lanner in san diego, los angeles, and denver. in addition to ensuring that proposed projects complied with environmental statutes such as the national environmental policy act, clean air act, clean water and emergency planning and community right to know act. he was also responsible for evaluating the complaints with 12898ive order environmental justice. thank you for being with us. >> thank you for this opportunity. it is my hope that we will heed the calls from a talented group of speakers who have talked about climate change. climate, our children and frontline communities of color are looking to you to promulgate a platform that communicates the need for radical change.
affects alle change this it does not affect all of us equally. usdr. robert lloyd reminds communities of color are hit first and worst. the response of our government to address this disparity is usually past and last. they remind us that environmental and public -- disasters are not randomly distributed. it should be no supplies that the poor in the u.s. have the worst health and -- live in the most degraded environments. there is no industry that engenders this clematis condition more than the fossil fuel industry. right now the bureau of ocean
energy management is considering five-year leases that will allow big oil companies to axis does areas.ed oil while there has been much discussion about the inlications of this plan spite of calls from mainstream and environmental groups are has been less attention to the gulf coast. this despite the fact that of the 13 potential leases 10 are in the gulf and three are in the arctic. this transmission of urgency proves that the gulf is one of if not the preferred sacrifice areas and why we must cease thinking about women changed solely as a nefarious natural phenomenon. oppression forof justice.section of cannot address climate disruption without addressing disruption to all forms of
justice. that includes the nexus of cancer alley, the denial of federal recognition for tribal nations and it is home to the tried to lost 90% of their land to the encroaching gulf waters due largely to drilling operations. the call -- gulf coast remains one of the two -- poorest areas. while i applaud many of theident obama's and democrat's efforts to address climate change it is important to distinguish between acknowledging and acting on climate change. this discrepancy was put on full display during the climate summit. my organization was honored to assist students and faculty from historically lacked colleges to participate because we believed
it was important for the stories of the gulf coast to be given attention and many faculty members and students were residents. the president and fellow democrats were negotiating lifting the crude oil export ban. they made impassioned pleas to democratic senators declaring the band must and but to no available. this can indicated to us and i believe the gulf coast that the president and democrats called to address climate change were meretricious and vacuous. we knew that lifting the ban with lead to more offshore drilling. there is an inconvenient truth. climate denial is not limited to jamesgeyman like centered in half and ted cruz. democrats are denying the signs of i'm a change. the science telling us we must keep 80% of fossil fuel deposits in the ground and the proposed
five year offshore leasing program would think -- [indiscernible] which is the equivalent to the commissions of 3.6 million cars. frederick douglas said where justice is tonight, where ignorant travails and where anyone classes made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to my neither persistent property will be safe. there are no better words that are trade the situation on the gulf coast and this is why we're seeing so many we skiing their lives to disrupt and abolish fossil fuels with the same fervor as abolishing slavery and has been the movement called the new abolitionists. half is no time for measures, perfunctory proclamations or policies derived from incrementalism. this is a radical system that
requires radical action. anothert cannot afford blowout or oil spill and the people cannot be captive to injustice that robs them of land and economy. mr. lewis words of will be vindicated as the entire type ofwill exist in a reality. van jonesto a poll by 68% of voters of color favored immediate action to address survey change and a 2014 informed us that 85% of african-americans support global commitment to act on climate which is the largest percentage of a demographic group. they predicted climate change will be a major issue for lack voters in the 2016 election and
82% of latinos and 89% of african-american support measures to regulate and reduce carbon emissions. no democratic candidate for the presidency has won the white vote in this country since 1964 with lyndon b. johnson and the average of white support is 39%. democrats aree dependent on the participation of people of color for electoral success. the dnc must prove that our health and the health of our communities are as important as to votes including a ban demonstrate this. there is only one choice. offshore drilling must be replaced with offshore wind powering a just transition from a fossil fuel economy to a fossil free future. the fossil fuel empire and political puppets can no longer use the excuse that energy production is to expensive. newsbloomberg nudes --
-- the only thing that is keeping us from a transition is a lack of local will. a line in the sand has been drawn and i call on the dnc to exercise political valor and stand with our children and the planet. write a chapter in world history and do something it uncle by calling for the cessation of all also drilling -- offshore drilling. thank you for this opportunity and i welcome your questions. >> first of all, thank you so much. one of the two or three hype points of paris was eating to talk to your crew of students. that was fun. that is what i wanted to take you for moment. he talked about some of the demographic realities for the party. thee are imagining
democratic party of the future, can you talk a little bit about your sense of young people and their relation to these issues and maybe help us think beyond as weovember's election write this platform. what do we need to have in mind if we are going to be a party or 15 years from now is competitive? >> absolutely. it was great to see you in paris and thank you for addressing the students. i do think that we have seen a slight bifurcation in this primary season between younger voters of color and older voters of color. i am turning 40 next week so saying younger voters of color is starting to mean something new to me. that said i do think that there is a heightened amount of urgency that we are seeing from younger people. they do not like the idea that they are going to be inheriting and uninhabitable planet. we see the sense of urgency and how they vote and how they disrupt and through direct
action as a mentioned. as we are moving forward we do have to think about down ballot elections. i would talk about the senate in this case. steve phillips brown discussed how a lack of investment in these communities of color led to the loss of senate and house seats in 2010 and 2014. it would behoove the democratic not treat the red states as sacrifice zones. invest in these communities and you will find that they are very keen on what needs to occur for climate change. -- wes important because will not collect the landmark supreme court decision. the supreme court increase the burden to use the civil right act so high that it is virtually impossible for especially frontline underfunded
communities of color to bring suit and i would add in the presence of our sister deborah that the lack of recognition of the united, nation precludes them from getting justice from bp and many think that is politically motivated because if they were federally recognized they could tell bp that they could not drill on their land and we would see the same program happening in seattle, washington and native communities across the country. >> thank you so very much. you have given us a major challenge in terms of the ways in which the democratic party at times itself has been complicit with some of the things we are concerned about. it reminds me in many ways of my princeton,e at talking about the value gap in the practices of inequality. when we talk about ecological
, our brothers and sisters on the reservation or the barrio more done youve then our precious white brother or sister in a manila suburb. can we seriously deal with impending ecological crisis without there being some diminishment in corporate power, incorporate influence on government? again, weer and over do not have the political will. the people want it. something is standing in the way. there is a major impediment here. as a corporate power, is a corporate greed in which those the -- in the corporate elite are able to deal logically, the priority is profit rather than public life? a smaller version of that question, can we significantly deal with ecological crisis and at the same time support tpp?
>> thank you so much for the question, brother west. my mother in forced my education to include your teachings and i will also be enforcing your his education so thank you so much. you are talking about corporate influence and it does not just have to do with our politicians. this in the greatest transmission of urgency. it has to do with how we are fed information. our major new sources are controlled by five or six corporations. we have been talking about flint. we are right here in arizona right now where there are families of navajo nation people living on seven gallons of water a day due to poison water sources from uranium ruling that we do not talk about it. it is not a part of our consciousness. that might have something to do with corporations. i do want to talk to you about
tpp because this is very important in my eyes and in my view. it is all about the expansion of fast track exports liquefied natural gas which would increase fracking. when you look at some of the countries who are involved, specifically japan which is one of the largest importers of lng and you combine that with the natural gas act of 1990 or 1992 which compels the u.s. to fast-track natural gas exports free-trades we have agreements with you can see where we are going with this equation. i do not believe that you can act on climate while also promoting free trade agreements contributors to emissions of fossil fuels and the continued extraction and use of fossil fuels area they are antithetical and it would be like asking the fox to have jurisdiction over the safety of the chicken. to remind the members of the committee we are half an hour
behind and it becomes unfair to the people that come at the end because it will have no time to testify in the questions. brief to make the answers and the questions brief, please. >> great. i will be brief. i want to thank you for your focus on the environmental concerns of african-americans issue isesident this which is really vital. i also noted your criticisms of president obama and i wanted to ask you what our attitudes of african-americans toward president obama's environmental record? not claimusly would to speak for every single african-american. >> you cited polls. >> i would say that an environmental justice circles, you will find some discrepancy on what people think. some people will call him a
champion and some people would say that some of his policies have been inconsistent specifically with what brother west just brought up. the free trade agreement and once again it will lead to more fracking and someone else will talk more to that we know that fracking disproportionately impacts communities of color particularly native communities. they would take some umbrage with a policy like that and while we were in paris people like bill and ms. brown herself fighting for a global climate policy while this is going on back home, watching unfortunately eurocrats in the president capitulate to the republicans that led to the crude oil export ban being lifted was also very disappointing. that said, we always want more of our politicians and we want more from our presidents and i think that is why this election is so important. whoever ends and being president we are going to be asking for even more because as i said, we do not have any more time for
perfunctory instrumental policies and in all of the above approach which the president adopted will not work to avert global climate catastrophe. . it was a pleasure to meet you last night. i do want to thank you for issue and.e ej of color suffer disproportionately. that is acceptable. i want to thank you for the work you do with hbc. they are an important part of to addresse movement climate change. differ with you on mr. obama. i think there are many important as we can point to but the next president to your point will need a congress.
there are things you can do within your executive authority, we should make sure that happens but ultimately we need a different congress and i think your discussion about the down ballot candidate is particularly important. we cannot continue to elect climate deniers to the senate. this is a long way to say thank you for what you're doing and i encourage you to keep up the good work. much, and thank you, everyone for this opportunity. thank you. [applause] >> ms. schaefer has a question. >> have one comment. you do not have to answer. it just and i probably should not say this, i will get slammed. -- begs the question that if elgar -- if al gore had won the election we would not be behind the eight ball. that is my comment. thank you. >> thank you very much.
sonnier -- sonia ramirez. she served as the deputy director of the governor of affairs for the bc tv. and she served for over six years as the government relations representative for the afl-cio where she worked as the chief immigration lobbyist. she has been a resource to working families and -- in the latino community, serving as a andtical organizer government affairs representative. thank you very much. >> thank you very much. it is an honor to join you today to discuss our nation's energy future and explain the use of unions.erica's trade
cost building trade units are representing 3 million crafts guild nationals in the u.s. and canada. our members -- on behalf of our members i welcome the opportunity to describe how our lu-based business model and our world has training capacity plays an integral role in the construction and maintenance of america's energy production and delivery infrastructure. currently, we estimate that 50% of our membership in the u.s. and canada is employed in energy-related industries. our success is predicated on delivering the safest, most highly trained, and productive skilled craft workforce found anywhere in the world. that is why our rank-and-file members and our signatory contractors collectively funded to the tune of $1 billion annually, a nationwide network joint apprenticeship
training programs. we're working with community organizations and partners to leverage public and private investments in energy construction projects to create structured training opportunities for historically underserved communities such as women, communities of color, and veterans. through these efforts and others we now most 100 apprenticeship readiness programs which prepare applicants for the academic and aal-world challenges of thing union apprentice and the construction industry. in real-world terms, it means that in right to work states like south dakota, specialized the link trades members working on energy project average $35 in our and that means workers are able to provide for their families while receiving union provided health care and pension benefits. the national building trades unions are committed to building a 20% -- 21st century energy
system that provides affordable and reliable energy for american families and businesses. and creates good paying middle-class jobs and meets the climate challenge before us. keeps options on the table. nuclear power provide 60% of all zero carbon generation in the u.s. and supports tens of thousands of union jobs. areding trades members improving efficiency reducing costs for taxpayers, students, and patience by cutting energy waste.
we strongly support the growth of renewable energy and want to ensure we are creating the kinds of high road jobs that can support a middle-class family in the process. the kind of jobs our members currently enjoy in the nuclear, oil and gas, and coal industries. a common sense partnership between labor, industry, and government can make that possible. ane nearby california as example. through the engagement of state and local governments, are california's building trades council has ensured that large and complex utility scale renewable projects are built with highly skilled, certified throughomen and men direct contractor engagement, california's building trade unions are making sure the local workers are recruited and trained an incumbent and unemployed workers are retained, all to reap the benefits of the economic growth and job creation. these jobs in the energy sector
put a floor underneath the middle class. through prevailing wage and project labor agreements, we can guarantee our members rights are protected. the local community concerns are addressed, and the safest, most highly trained workforce in the world is able to build a new generation of energy projects on time and under budget. insupport an energy policy which the democratic party's commitment to grow our economy and rebuild our middle class, and protect our environment all go hand-in-hand. that means raising working standards, fostering common sense reform, and unlocking the trillions of dollars on wall street sidelines to build the energy infrastructure we will need to power 21st century economy. it means taking advantage of all options, from her doable new we are to natural gas and coal with carbon capture sequestration two of -- create affordable and
reliable energy while reducing emissions and meeting the climate challenge. if instead we put ideology over middle-class jobs and practical solutions and start taking options off the table, we will miss an opportunity to experience an economic wave that moves us closer to a cleaner energy future and leaves this world a better place for our children, our grandchildren, and generations to follow. thank you very much. [applause] >> any questions? >> thank you. comment. make a thank you. >> they were incredibly well versed in what they did and they were great. thank you for all the training and commitment you all have made to renewables. >> thank you.
michael is the founder and president of clean line energy. he started the company to help ring about thousands of megawatts of new renewable energy. he took energy from a two-man company to a national leader. he has developed a thermal, biomass, and wind energy projects. he is a board member of the american wind energy association. thank you. >> thanks very much. it's an honor to be here. my mom would be very proud. i became a democrat shortly after we moved here from ireland when i was a small child because
my mom wanted to vote against richard nixon. we all became citizens. [inaudible] thank you. i will tell her you said that. i want to talk about the state of play on wind, where we are and where we think we can get to and some of the challenges the industry faces as we tackle the challenges that have been outlined today. the tax incentives we've had place -- had in place for wind energy for the last 20 years have paid off. wind is now the cheapest source of new power in the united states. 2/3 inf come down almost the last 6 or 7 years alone. cheap, wind power is so we are saving consumers billions of dollars per year. on the jobs front, there are close to 100,000 people working in the wind industry today.
those numbers will continue to grow. the labor department says that today's fastest-growing job description is wind turbine technician, and these are jobs that pay well, they almost always carry health benefits because it's a very competitive market, and companies work hard to hang on to the wind techs they train. it is a fast-growing field. most of thewind projects built around the country are built in rural areas, and the wind turbines create an extra crop for farmers and ranchers. we have talked about the different percentages we can get to around the country. i live in houston, texas. on a good day in texas, we get power 50% of our electric
from wind energy. other states have seen similar levels of penetration. operators have become accustomed to incorporating a variable resource like wind into the grid and they are getting very good at it great in terms of environmental benefits, the wind projects we have online today, power the equivalent of roughly 20 million households, and that is like taking 28 million cars off the road. because of the stability we have seen over the last few years on the wind tax incentives, we've seen a lot of in sourcing of manufacturing. these are operations likely to rbines,re because wind tu these are very large machines and very difficult to transport. it's natural to make the right here in the u.s.
in terms of our priorities and what we hope to see in years to come from the public policy side, we have 4 priorities. one is a level playing field. over the next four years, tax incentives for wind will be reduced. we hopet period of time to see policies in place that would provide us with the same sorts of benefits that polluting sources of energy currently receive. -- this isrmits always a tough challenge for our industry, because we are working on projects and we have to strike a balance between different interests, local social interests, environmental interests, etc. we need prospects that have effective timelines and take into account all the variables. transmission, we are building transmission lines that go from the windy parts of the country to the coast.
these are complex projects that take a great deal of time, many years to put together, and a stable but effective permitting environment is the key to getting to the energy goals that have been articulated today. wholesale power markets. that can create markets effectively tap into the ability of wind and solar to compete in these markets, we will see a lot more electricity. and some of the areas of the country we will be seeing some of the greatest penetration of new renewables, areas where you have wholesale markets that allow new entrants to participate. i'm happy to take your questions. >> i think you are familiar with president obama's clean power plant rule, which requires states to write plans to reduce measurable carbon reductions. what does that mean to your
industry? is hard because each state will write a different plan. do you have a macro sense of what that means? >> broadly speaking, what that will get us, that will address the issue i mentioned before. if we can have a level playing field so we are producing electricity that does not pollute, if those folks who do pollute pay the cost of that pollution, it will help us compete more effectively and the tax credits will work for the administration. >> thank you. camilla is cofounder of oregon a sustainability advocate and social entrepreneur for more than 15 years. i whitman college she led the largest campus club, a climate action group, and founded a try college civic leadership network. after graduating with honors in
2010, she directed outrage for a regional urban planning project worked at the u.s. institute for environmental conflict resolution, and helped nationwide musical theater project about fossil fuels. so you started in college? >> out of the cradle. greetings. i am now the codirector of the ofpaign, also the cofounder oregon climate, a grassroots covering pricing organization. i run a carbon tax and rebate campaign and washington, d.c. further climate action network. i'm honored to address such a distinguished committee. you have the power to advance the most important defense against the existential threat facing my generation, climate change. i'm gratefully dnc is open to
voices like mine and the communities i stand with. i'm here to talk about why the dnc platform committee should a doubt a carbon tax. people say putting a price on carbon is impossible, but it was nelson mandela who said it is always under -- impossible until it's done. it's time to get this done. there is too much at stake. my generation and younger americans need our next president to act, to make polluters pay for the greenhouse gases they are spewing into our air. the u.s. needs a climate policy rooted in science, economics, and social justice, and one that will last. we can meet these goals with the that goes revenue back to american families. the scientific case is strong. every credible plant stays below 105 degrees celsius planning includes a price on greenhouse gas and mission such as the carbon tax.
the economic case is strong. market-based solution, a carbon tax empowers businesses to transition to the clean energy economy. a carbon tax could re-energize small family businesses like the metal fabrication company my grandfather started in rural southern oregon. it will create new manufacturing jobs in america as we -- we retool for sustainability, and it will give people the meaningful work they want and the prize that comes with it. in contrast to the clean power plan, a carbon tax generates revenue, with estimates of at least $1.2 trillion over 10 years. that revenue can be turned back into the economy to help families cope with the costs of climate change, to stimulate new investment, and drive innovation. the case for social justice is also strong. most carbon policy is regressive because it raises the cost of energy. low income households put more
of their paychecks into energy than wealthy households. a carbon tax, because it generates revenue, can be a deeply progressive policy. by returning that revenue to americans in a way that fulfills economic justice. this equitable option can further racial justice. studies show that a carbon tax and rebate provides the highest benefit to latinos, african-americans, and asian households. this is only fair, since communities of color and low income families have contributed the least to climate interruption but bear most of the cost. decades to achieve our goal and we cannot afford to fight this battle twice. the american people will defend the solution over time if revenues benefit them in noticeable ways, like a regular check in the mail. this is why including a carbon tax and rebate in the dnc
platform isn't just right for the climate, but right for politics. yale pulling shows that 68% of all registered voters would support carbon dividend legislation. those supporters come from both sides of the aisle. this means it is a tool that can be used to defeat any climate denier on the ticket. adopting the solution into the platform would unify this party. a carbon tax were all revenues are returned to households to the tax code is supported by 85% of clinton supporters and 88% of sanders supporters. the dnc could energize young people who care deeply about real solutions to climate change, like the leaders in my networks, to get out the vote for the democrats in november. it is time to be clear that we have an affordable and inclusive, comprehensive solution that will make america a clean energy superpower while helping working families.
that solution is a carbon tax and rebate where polluters pay people to save the planet, our only home. in a world diseased with distrust, may you all find the courage to commit to this honest solution, and we will commit to you until together we win. thank you. [applause] i must ask you, i whitman college where you graduated six years ago, right? they say the climate action group was the largest group on campus? >> that's right. >> i'm going to go back to anthony rogers right, when he was testifying some questions about how much the environmental issues mean to young people. we are to make sure that doing those things that are important to our young people, for our young people.
can you elaborate on that? it surprises me that would be the largest organization on campus. have been growing up with the effects of climate change. i was born in 1987, when dr. james hansen testified to congress that climate change was real, and the humans were causing it. this is common knowledge. of social andlem economic justice and mere survivability. 20 of my peers have questioned whether the world is safe to have children. i think we all need to really consider our priorities if that is what this generation in america is asking ourselves. thank you very much for that very clear and brilliant testimony. i want to follow up on what you said, diplomatically, and chairmanship like with regard to young people coming into the fold, i'm going to say it in
little bit differently. wrightto ask mr. rogers this question. we know that young people, especially young people of color, have not made a decision to be democrats yet. they are more independent leaning. as a democrat, and i just want i wantthis clearly, these young people to be part of the democratic party. wewhat is it that you see need to do in this platform, because i think most of us agree with what both of you are saying. what do we need to do on this platform to convince the young people to register as democrats? that's what i want to see happen. >> i have been waiting for this question. we need leaders who call for the physics andt justice demands are not politically convenient.
it's time to stop setting our priorities based on polling and start setting them on what we need to survive. when you do that, you will see that we will rise up and fight for you. that is how social change happens. it happens when people ask for solutions by name. we need to stop with the buzzwords, honestly, the lack of courage. we need to start asking for what we need, because we know plenty of people, thousands of people around the world dedicated their entire lives to building expertise in what we need to save the planet. it's time to listen to that expertise and find creative ways to make that political capital. we have done it in oregon. we have turned out thousands and thousands of people to turn out creative projects for the carbon tax. without a federal price on carbon, we are not going together. >> thank you so much for your
comments and passion and the improve do every day to our environment and address this existential crisis we are facing. i want to ask you a specific question about carbon pricing. what are your thoughts about states using carbon pricing as a response to what they can do under the clean power plan? focusing on a series of issues which are vital, but as you know, republicans have a pitchfork battle. toy are now using the courts deny just that basic action. what do you think of states using carbon price as a response? >> i think they should put a price on carbon as a way to fulfill the clean power plan obligations. it's the most efficient way to drive down emissions. with a national carbon tax you would see the same emission reductions in, say, a state like
montana would be seven dollars, to achieve the same emission reductions as the clean power plan objective. if we instead go with this option to price carbon, we will see a lot of unity from both sides of the aisle. it is a solution that many of --servatives and thinkers there is common cause to be made in those states and among those circles. >> mr. parker? >> yes. i'm very happy to see some of our younger generation come forward and speak their truth. for many of us, we wait for science to prove that and it's important on many levels, but i think it's time we listen to our young people who had that clear vision.
they same a lineal now. i have three children who tell me each and every day that it is so important to protect the climate. they don't have their blinders on, they are aware of what's happening in not only the united states, but in the world. they are far more connected, and it's important we start listening to our young people strong they have a very voice in the environment. my six-year-old told my mom, tell them not to pollute the waters with oil. he says it very clear, and he wants to protect the fish in the sea. that is a deeper level than what many of us are waiting for the science strong voice in the grade as you driven the road and see oil refineries, and for us -- many of us live on reservations, and you breathe in and so your voice
starts to go out as mine is right now from the toxins. you have to wonder, what is happening. we try and wait for science or action from the higher levels of government, but the people have the power and we really hope they take to the streets and that the democratic platform is people.entation of the >> thank you for your work, especially. for as it is a matter of the integrity of our bodies and a spiritual crisis as well. world it would be without fish in the sea and birds in the sky. that's not the world that any of us want. thank you. >> i mean this when i say it, thank you for generations yet unborn. thank you. [applause] next, a resident of arizona,
international representative of the laborers international union of north america covering the pacific southwest region. the union represents 1/2 milli on workers in almost all areas of construction and physical infrastructure projects. welcome. >> thank you very much. i appreciate the opportunity to speak to you today. i am a resident of arizona. millionsent 1/2 construction workers around this country and in canada. roads, bridges, tunnels, pipelines, buildings, farms, facilities, wind solar projects, water projects, and virtually any other type of physical infrastructure you can think of. toay i would like to talk you about the importance of the energy sector jobs to the workers who perform them and economic benefits to the nation as a whole.
during the great recession, the unemployment rate in the construction sector reached nearly 30%. to the construction sector, it was the second great depression. if it wasn't for the growth in nationsector that the witnessed during this time, tens of thousands of our members would have faced real prospect of losing their homes and not being able to provide for their families. the growth in the energy sector has been a saving grace for tons of our members. the promise of a bright future for tens of thousands of more of our members as a nation transitions away from the high carbon energy generation per allele of the past into a cleaner, low carbon future. this transition is necessary for .he future of our nation we are not climate deniers, we are realists. over the past few years, the
united states has reduced carbon emissions to their lowest level in more than 20 years while .rowing the economy we are proud of the instrumental role our members have played in making that possible. the pacific southwest region includes arizona, california, hawaii, new mexico and west texas. our members perform work on the ,alos verdes generating station the activity or an, among others, providing reliable and affordable zero carbon electricity to millions of americans. our members work wind and solar projects in the southwest as well. across the country, liunai members built the infrastructure that reduced carbon pollution, improved air quality, and helped americans save money on their energy bills. a space load generation shifts from carbon also fuels towards
low 20 carbon options like solar and wind, there must be bridged fuels like natural gas to meet the energy needs of the nation. supports a commonsense approach to addressing the threat of climate change and the urgent need for affordable energy. i energy costs amount to a regressive tax on those people least able to afford it, but a commonsense energy policy can lower emissions and energy costs at the same time. attempts to derail energy production on a project by project basis is something the environmental movement advocates and will stall creation of desperately needed jobs and raise energy costs for consumers . opponents of energy infrastructure projects have insulted the nature of the work and the workers who perform it. they have never seen the transformative effect of a union construction career. i have been in you put -- union
labor for my seven years. my brother has been in union labor for 37 years, and my father was a 49 year when he passed away. these are not temporary careers. lastingtion jobs bill arrears straight they provide livable salaries, health insurance, and pensions. our members get access to the best training in the world free of charge, which makes him the safest and most productive workers in the industry. without the dignity of a job, none of the other benefits are realized. the u.s. will continue to depend on a variety of resources, including coal, oil, natural gas, wind, solar, and nuclear power. thea supports and all of above energy policy like the democratic party adopted in its 2012 platform. the 2012 platform acknowledged that we can reduce our reliance on oil by harnessing our natural gas resources in a safe, productive manner.
we believe it's important the 2016 platform recognize the crucial role natural gas will play in securing our clean energy future. liuna also believes the democratic party should have a strong commitment to the environmental justice. we are particularly concerned about our deteriorating water infrastructure in the more than 450,000 round field sites that currently exist across the country where hazardous pollutants threaten the health -- health and safety of american family straight we support efforts to clean up the sites to protect our communities and create new economic development and job opportunities in the process. we stand ready to be on the front lines of that important work. our hope is that the platform committee and delegates to the national convention embrace a platform of inclusiveness and support energy and environmental policies that don't single out workers in one sector or another unfairly. thank you. >> thank you very much. any questions?
thank you very much. greentional director of for all was an early architect of the organization state policy ,nd workforce efforts previously served as the environmental equity director of green lining institute, a public policy group that works to groups andadvantaged has received --. for herreceived awards work on behalf of low income communities and communities of color. >> it's a pleasure to be here with the committee, to offer some of the things i've learned growing up and doing this work for over a decade. i lead green for all. out howion is to figure to build a green economy strong enough to lift people out of poverty. we have helped to create the country passed first ever green job status, led by congresswoman
for losey, signed into law by president bush, and we have since developed dozens of federal, state, and local programs figuring out how to solve poverty and pollution at the same time. my work on these issues come from personal experience. i grew up in east oakland. one of the most polluted communities in the country. my family and i made a commitment to continue living and rebuilding the community where i grew up. it is where i have raised my twin boys. because of this zip code in which we live, their lives are projected to be 12 years less than a more affluent surrounding community. better our zip codes are determining of our life expectancy than our genetic codes, we have to start to figure out what are the solutions to addressing the disparities and economic inequalities we face. today i share with you a few considerations as to the drafting of the platform
committee. we ask you include language to protect families from unregulated polluters by directing them to accelerate a mission reductions in hotspot communities so our families living near refineries and industries can begin breathing cleaner air and so there kids can play outside. let's move away from the old idea of trickle-down technology for the poor while supporting the investment in underserved communities trade let's make sure the families who suffer most from pollution are the ones who benefit from the cost savings of clean technology as well as the environment to co-benefit. let's make sure that opportunities created in the green sectors have an eye towards closing inequality in america. we ask that you include contracts for ethnic and small businesses to support wealth generation for all. the changing demographics in america demand the majority minority businesses need to be
part of our growing economy, and it is important if we are going to drive the economy. i want to make sure we're addressing carbon pricing. if it is to move forward, as many speakers have suggested, we ask that you make sure the investment generated from that, the revenues generated from that prioritize communities that have been paying for that pollution with their lives and with their lungs. let me share a story of how this can make a huge change. meet ai helped to coalition of diverse organizations helping to pass a law in california. california already has a program that requires a 1/ of the money from the program4 goes to benefiting communities that are directly impacted. in the three years of implementation, over $900 million has been generated from this program and obligated to such as developing affordable housing near transit hub's and installing solar
panels on the homes of low income families. we took a year figuring out what are the programs that really benefit communities that are most impacted by pollution and poverty, and how do we begin to reduce the cost of living while improving the quality of life. that's how we landed at those programs. one woman lives in fresno, california. has is a community that some of the worst poverty in the country. maria is a single mom struggling to make ends meet. her electricity bill was averaging $200 a month because she was raising her ac in the the --and her heater by in the winters. we as a platform c2 outline solutions that will help reduce poverty and pollution in some of the poorest communities. thank you. [applause]
questions? thank you very much. did you have a question? i wanted to say how proud i am of you and green for all. green for all has made a major impact into the overall policy and laws of the land, in terms of clean technology, clean energy, and ensuring we preserve our planet. it is so sad to hear you say your child, your children, their lifespan is 12 years shorter. in 2016, i reference all my family and friends whose life was cut short because of polluters. i wonder if you could talk about briefly in terms of clean technology jobs as being pathways out of poverty and why good paying jobs in the tech
sector and in the environmental do create these pathways out of poverty, but also create a cleaner environment so that your children will not have to live 12 years shorter than most children who don't live in communities that are polluted. >> thank you for that question, and thank you for your leadership. having spent my whole life doing this, it's really unfair than a matter how well i live my boys, they will live 12 years less than somebody else's kids. i think the story of maria was really indicative of the possibilities of how we can get out of this. not only did we help her get free solar panels, she saved $200 a month. that is money she can reinvest into the city of fresno. thatp of that, the program helped install the solar panels trains young boys and men to give back to the solar -- to get
back into the community with solar jobs. we help to support a business, help to get a job, help to reduce $200 a month. fun with herave kid. on top of that, the refinery down the way is cranking out little less of dirty energy and the community the lives around the refinery is breathing better. when we think about the bottom-line effect of what we can do when we think about the copper hints of impact -- comprehensive impact. >> i love green for all. thank you. are talking about that have been reinvested in the community, those are a result of the trading regime that california is using to reduce greenhouse gas emissions? do i follow you? >> that's right. >> the legislature put in place
a requirement that a certain percentage would go into local communities, but it is because of this trading scheme? >> yes. first, the revenue did come from that trading scheme. i'm not here to champion the to champion the fact that it has to come from a cap and trade program. it can come from carbon pricing, a carbon tax. it can come from any of the other were other ways we generate revenue by making sure polluters are ratcheting down there pollution and we are accelerating the investments generated from this carbon pricing program into the community's most affected. it was written so at least 25% of the total cost from the cap and trade program of california is invested into the program told to us by the community. we asked, what are the programs
that are really doing good in your community, doing outreach? what are the programs you really need? only after hearing a year of those surveys did we say, we will take those as our marching orders, and we advocated for those programs. we got everything the community asked for. i have always thought it green for all was the most helpful thing in the country, just to give people a sense of what you are talking about in terms of zip code and what it means, can you just may be remember back and describe briefly that day when the alert went out from the refinery and richmond to people there? that struck me as hard as what happened in flint in a lot of ways. >> i was in the bay area when that happened and flint shortly after. we heard about what was happening. , when there was a
refinery explosion, a lot of people did not understand what it was. it was loud, there was a lot of light outside. people thought it was fireworks or a game. they opened the doors and walked out. though there were alerts on tv and otherwise in the community saying it's not safe, go back in the house, it wasn't in the language of the people who lived in the community. a lot of the people were southeast asian. they did not understand what is happening. there were literally breathing the pollution into their lungs. it's important for us to understand that even when we have these communities, we have to make sure they are being forced to be good neighbors. >> thank you very much. arizonaian and solar advocate, solar city.
formerly served on the staff of janet napolitano and nancy pelosi. jose is an installer based out of solar city's phoenix warehouse. it is a distinct honor for both of us to be here speaking before such a distinguished, legendary panel. to here with jose to talk you about why we care so much about solar and why we hope the democratic party will adopt a pro-solar platform. we work at the same company here in phoenix. i will let jose tell you about his job as an installer. >> good afternoon. my name is jose. i am working for solar city in the phoenix office. i came from new jersey, relocated my family out here
thanks to solar city, the company i work for. advocate forostly the benefits of solar and encourage the democratic party to go to a stronger pro-solar program. just to touch a little bit on myself, i come from a large family in new york city. eight of us, to be exact, grew up in a one-bedroom apartment. i would never have imagined i would be in arizona. thanks to the solar industry, i was able to read locate my family and provide my kids with a better way of life -- relocate my family and provide my kids with a better way of life. i also work for the same company. not only do i work in the industry, i'm also a solar customer. my wife and i installed solar in our roof 4 months ago and we were proud to show our four-year-old boy and two-year-old girl that our house
is now 100% renewable. our rooftop system also protects our family from increasing rates as our kids get older and discover hairdryers and game boys and things like that, and now we have more money in our pockets to buy diapers and things we need, and peace of mind to know that we are rate increases that may occur in the future. for us, solar doesn't change. that is one of the benefits. we think it's critical we support the adoption of renewable energy. to be successful in doing so, our party needs to include support for pro-solar policies. olar gives consumers choice, creates healthy market competition, and leads to a cleaner, stronger electrical grid. going solar used to mean a big upfront investment in cash. with technological development and innovative financing, now people can go solar affordably.
loans,e solar lease customers get all the benefits of clean energy and save money because competitive solar choices can offer them solar power as a cheaper rate than what they currently pay their utility. than is more accessible ever. it's no longer just for the wealthy. low to middle income customers are enjoying the monthly savings that solar provides. more people have a better choice now. is also the largest industry in the united states. currently over two hundred thousand solar jobs in the united states. 300,000 solar jobs were created last year alone. solar jobs will continue to increased her medically. perhaps most importantly, the j be outsourced. supporting solar policies and
supporting economic development. perhaps best are the environmental benefits. to reduce the greenhouse gases as well as dangerous pollution that affects our public health, successfully combat climate changes. we have adopted more reusable energy. that does not support solar policies that increase as energy independence as a nation. additionally, it is well documented the higher concentration of elements surrounding traditional power power is better for everyone. we can change this planning one panel at a time. >> thank you all very much. let me say this, after the freddie gray incident in altimore about a year ago, number of youth were complaining
that they cannot find jobs. what has happened is that the solar industry has become a big employer of so-called disconnected youth. these folks are making very good money, they feel good about themselves. of course you have the environmental advantages and all the things you just talked about. saving a lotents of money on their utility bills, but it solves a problem in trying to find careers for a lot of our young people. do you hire a lot of young people? are there a lot of young folks in your company? >> the majority of installers are in their 20's. wealth,vides them
financial state to be able to move forward with their family. i have two young kids myself and my kids are looking at going into the solar energy field as well. >> in arizona, 50% of our staff come from low income neighborhoods. thank you both, which leads into my question. it's difficult that you talked about affordability for solar. as we look into the neighborhoods and our panel about poverty and how many are working two jobs just to pay for heating, sond their how can we get solar into these communities who are impoverished? arehappy to hear they providing jobs, which is very encouraging. how can we get solar and bitter
green energy practices into impoverished communities and tribal reservations as well? i worked with individuals who are interested in getting rooftop solar. folks i work with our hispanic because i live in tucson. as long as they qualify for a 650 credit score, they can get solar at zero dollars down. there is a monthly fee and itted for 20 years, is less than what they are paying. they save money right away. fact, that's what my wife and i did. >> i had a problem with the electrical company where i live right now. when i moved out here, only been here about a year and a half, i close down my house on february 13. rp just happen to pass the
rates thatck up the made it almost impossible for anyone to get solar in the srp area. unfortunately, i cannot get solar until the bill is passed or something can be done about it. but i do have the credit, i do have the income to be able to go green. but unfortunately, the electrical company won't allow it. >> we have the income now because we have our jobs now. >> yes. >> thank you. [inaudible] when you made the decision to manyll solar panels -- people who have solar panels are able to sell their electricity back to their local utility if they are not using it. role doesle, and what that play in your decision to install the solar panels, the
local decisions about how we are going to price all of this and really recognize the public health and environmental benefits? i meet with a lot of people with that question, and they are concerned in arizona about losing that benefit and we do have net metering in arizona and it's fantastic. solars a great time to go in arizona, until they change the laws. right now we do have net metering. we are compensated 100% for the electricity we generate during the day. it's not producing anything. at night i have to drop from the grid and they compensate me dollar for dollar for those credits. >> that's an important issue for people in making these decisions to be part of distributed clean solar. >> otherwise all that extra generation i have today is going to my neighbors and utility gets to charge for it but i'm not compensated. >> we send more energy back than
what we actually use. a lot of the homes have certain panels and they send a certain amount of energy back to the grid, which can be used at night. a good percentage of that is going back to the electrical company. >> it's a great policy. >> great. >> thank you very much. i wish you the best. thank you. [applause] ladies and gentlemen, coming by skype is josh fox. fox is the founder and company,of the w.o.w. which works closely with actors and nonactors from diverse backgrounds, including members of the u.s. military, activist communities, and sustainable energy and designs.
andncompasses designers filmmakers from around the world to address current social and political crises. founded in 1996, international 8o.w. has new work in countries with a rotating network of over 100 actors and creative artists spanning 30 continents. 5 sounds very interesting. fox? >> yes. i think what i'm known for is creating the documentaries "gasman" and "gasman 2." you for the opportunity and honored to testify before you on the important need for the party to adopt a ban on fracking in its national platform. in 2008 my family was offered a gas lease to frack in pennsylvania near the border of new york.
on industry's offer sent me an eight-year investigation into the truth about fracking. my investigative work became two feature-length documentaries that premiered on hbo to an approximate audience of 50 million people. sman" was nominated for the oscar for best documentary. my investigation brought me to hundreds of locations, interviewing hundreds of scientists and elected officials. what i found is horrific. an industry with no regard for public health and safety and a deeply flawed and unregulated will process that is inherently contaminating and dangerous. fracking causes rampant public health a crisis among citizens exposed to toxic air and water with effects ranging from brain damage to cancer to birth defects.
fracking components released have the potential to damage every human system. the industry has been found to use over 900 toxic chemicals that are projected directly into the earth, creating toxic waste that has been shown to contaminate sources of underground drinking water. 70 million americans live within 1 mile of fracking. they are in danger of adverse health effects. that has spurred a huge movement across thecking country. when i started in 2008 there was virtually no science on fracking. proveere are studies that the damage fracking causes. 350 citiesed to over nationwide. what i have seen is one of the largest and fastest-growing
social movements on the planet. there are hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people in the movement against fracking. it is an incredible gathering of people from all walks of life. to ban fracking is mighty, popular, enthusiastic, dedicated, armed with science and the facts, and motivated by protecting our children from harm. and we vote. many major fracking states are swing states. the democratic party needs the votes of those people who will be motivated to go and vote based solely on fracking issues. florida, colorado all have significant numbers of people who are anti-fracking voters in these key swing states and we
need them to assure victory in november. people like myself will work democrats if elect it means we can and the horrific destruction caused by fracking. in march a poll revealed the majority of americans oppose fracking. even republicans have the biggest drop in support of fracking in the last year. 8, a diverse coalition delivered over 90,000 conditions to the dnc demanding a ban on fracking be included in the party platform and a massive protest is planned for philadelphia on july 24, the march for clean energy revolution. it is demanding a ban on fracking and its demands have 400 endorsed by over organizations. fracking is the priming -- primary emerging battleground. most disturbing to me as the language of the democratic party that has been taken directly from the natural gas industry.
cambridge fuel policy means we will switch a huge section of electricity generation to fracking natural gas. that means hundreds of thousands of miles of pipelines and probably 2 million new fracking wells. regime change in energy to fracking. that would be an utter disaster for the climate and surely push us beyond the stated goals of the democratic party. methane is 86% more powerful than carbon dioxide in the short which is which is why peer-revd research shows shale gas is worse for the climate than coal. if we push 300 new shale gas power plants, other infrastructure, it will be catastrophic for the climate and democratic hearty. fracked gas is a gangplank to a global warming calamity. pursuing a new energy regime --
for the united states to have signed those climate accords in paris, it means we have committed to dramatically reduce emissions and move towards renewable energy vigorously. the only way we do that is to stop fracking and phase out natural gas immediately. of the gas wells in the united states are frack, that means moving away from all natural gas swiftly and decisively. thank you. >> thank you very much. [applause] >> any questions? yes. walk me through what happens if we do discontinue hydraulic fracturing, if it's the case that this currently produces more than 1/2 of our current
natural gas and 1/2 of our current oil. are we then depending on the free market to then make these adjustments? you will be answering a question that comes from someone who is that the free market provides benefits to all of this. or will the petroleum industry fill the demand that currently exists through means that are a clever little -- equivalently or perhaps even more use to our goals in the area of climate change. here?s the guide path >> we are in the process of regulating out cold. we have low ceilings for carbon dioxide emissions. we have to adopt a ceiling the
natural gas cannot survive. we have to phase out the ground. one of the ways we do this is by banning fracking. what is happening in america right now is enormous grassroots movement is motivated for political change. if we pursue an agenda where we incentivize the creation of renewable energy and do that in what i believe is an incredible grassroots force, some may call it a political revolution, on the ground, and we give people the incentive to go out and educate their neighbors and create incentives for renewable energy, i think we can both phase out coal and natural gas on the way to hundred percent renewable energy. elijah cummings: thank you, mr. south. south: thank you for your testim