Major Climate and Coastal Adaptation Bill Falls One Vote Shy of Passing Virginia Senate Committee

Thursday, January 29, 2015

This is a huge mistake and an enormous missed opportunity for Virginia. As always, thanks a lot Republicans!
Eight state and national environmental groups expressed their disappointment with the vote late this afternoon by the Virginia Senate Agriculture Committee to reject Senator Donald McEachin's Virginia Coastal Protection Act. Here's their statement:"By rejecting the Virginia Coastal Protection Act (VCPA), the Committee failed to move our economy forward and begin the necessary work to work with Virginia's coastal communities to prepare for rising sea levels linked to climate change.
Senator McEachin, and those who voted for his bill, know that governing is about solutions, which is why Senator McEachin had developed this cost effective plan for addressing coastal flooding, lowering electric bills and meeting the goals of the Clean Power Plan. But the majority rejected this bi-partisan approach.
The House is still considering a companion version of the bill, which is being carried by Delegate Villanueva. Both versions would allow Virginia to compete with our mid-Atlantic neighbors who have created 290,000 renewable and energy efficiency jobs.
In the future, these Senators will again have to decide if they will continue to be deniers who rely on the oldest and dirtiest sources of power or if they want to look forward to the jobs created by investments in wind, solar and energy efficiency.
Virginia is already 80% of the way toward meeting its Clean Power Plan goal with steps the utilities were planning on taking anyway. The VCPA would have easily and efficiently helped us get the rest of the way there. It is a shame that they didn't do the right thing."
-Chesapeake Climate Action Network
-Virginia Conservation Network
-Virginia Sierra Club
-Southern Environmental Law Center
-Appalachian Voices
-Environment Virginia
-Virginia League of Conservation Voters
-NextGen Climate America