A big THANK YOU to the Cory Booker campaign for including comments from the SC Small Business Chamber in its press release today (see below).
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 4, 2019
Cory Booker Releases Historic Climate and Environmental Justice Plan That Would Directly Impact South Carolina
Columbia, SC — Today, Cory Booker released a sweeping $3 trillion plan to address the threat of climate change and build a 100% carbon neutral economy by 2045. The threat of climate change requires bold action and leadership, reflected in Cory’s aggressive plan.
In South Carolina, the need for urgent action to address climate change could not be clearer, as another powerful hurricane has caused mandatory evacuations in coastal areas. According to a report in Yale Climate Connection, “there is now evidence that the unnatural effects of human-caused global warming are already making hurricanes stronger and more destructive.”
“We are facing a dual crisis of climate change and economic inequality,” said Cory Booker. “Without immediate action, we risk an incredible human toll from disasters, health impacts, rising national security threats, and trillions of dollars in economic losses.”
“To end the real and growing threat of climate change and to create a more just country for everyone, we must heal these past mistakes and act boldly to create a green and equitable future. That’s exactly what I’ll do as president.”
Here is what Palmetto State community leaders say about the plan:
“South Carolina is blessed with beautiful and abundant natural resources, but these treasures are threatened by the negative effects of climate change, which will disproportionately threaten our families and children at the margins of society,” said Andrew Waters, Executive Director of the Spartanburg Area Conservancy. “Senator Cory Booker’s ‘Climate and Environmental Justice Plan’ is a bold, strategic vision for our nation’s climate and environmental policy. I believe the plan will help strengthen our economy while forging a sustainable model for our long-term energy needs and addressing the threats our most vulnerable communities face from climate change.”
“For the fourth year in a row, we have a Category 5 hurricane in the Atlantic. Dorian has the strongest peak sustained winds ever recorded. Next year’s category 5 storm will likely be worse. This is why proposals like Senator Booker’s to block offshore drilling for oil in the Atlantic on day one of a new administration is so crucial,” said Frank Knapp, President & CEO of South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce. “The Trump administration would permit oil rigs off the East Coast exactly where Dorian will be moving. The inevitable destruction of those future rigs by massive hurricanes would inundate our shores with oil adding to the economic devastation to our local economies.”
As president, Cory will directly invest over $3 trillion dollars by 2030 to build a 100% carbon neutral economy by 2045, accelerate the end of fossil fuels by immediately ending all fossil fuel subsidies, drive innovation and a clean energy workforce through a $400 billion community-based investment in every corner of the country, unleash natural climate solutions through expansion of sustainable agriculture practices, reforestation, and coastal wetlands restoration, establish an Environmental Justice Fund to right historic harms, and lead the world toward ambitious and binding emissions commitments. Here’s how South Carolina could benefit from this plan:
- South Carolina is home to 36 superfund sites. Cory Booker’s plan to establish a United States Environmental Justice Fund would invest in these underserved communities that are most plagued by lead-based paint and contaminated water lines.
- Currently 1.2 million children in the U.S. have unsafe blood lead levels, and according to an article in The State, since 2011, small utilities serving South Carolina have exceeded the federal safety standard for lead in the water at least once. One of the key points of Cory Booker’s plan is a lead remediation initiative which will pave the way for the replacement of every school, daycare, and residential lead drinking water service line in the country and the lead abatement of all housing units by the end of his second term.
- The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control has identified more than 160 stretches of state waterways that it considers to be “of concern” as of 2018. Cory’s plan would hold corporate polluters accountable for the damage they have caused and require them to clean up their pollution instead of having taxpayers foot the bill.
- According to an article in the Post and Couriersome of the biggest effects that climate change could bring to South Carolina are: harsher hurricanes, worse flooding, higher electric bills as temperatures continue to rise, and wealth transfer as farmers and outside laborers are not able to continue working. Cory’s plan centers people and communities through strong labor standards, funding disaster relief and preparedness, incentivizing distributed ownership of renewable technologies, engaging with communities to make their own energy and environmental choices, and ensuring a just transition for fossil fuel workers.
During his 9 trips to South Carolina, Cory Booker has held several environmental justice-focused events across the state including:
- A tour of Spartanburg County’s Arkwright Community
- Environmental Justice Town Hall Meeting at C.C. Woodson Community Center in Spartanburg
- Environmental Justice Forum with student leaders at Allen University in Columbia
Read Cory’s full plan on Climate and Environmental Justice here.