Coloradans Call for Bold Action Now to Avert the Climate Crisis!
Thanks so much to everyone (~70 people!) who attended our 4th annual Climate Lobby Day on Jan. 24! Below are the talking points and bills we’ve identified thus far for this session. We’ll update this blog as the Legislative session unfolds. Keep us posted if you hear of bills not on this list of importance to support/oppose.
Make every day climate lobby day. It is up to each of us to contact our legislators and demand bold climate action at scale with the crisis. Click here to get contact information for your legislator and use the talking points below to help you!
Don’t miss our next lobby day on March 20th – RSVP HERE! We meet up at 8 a.m. at the Baptist Church by the Capitol, have a light breakfast and an hour training, meet up with anyone else from our district, and then we all walk across the street to lobby our Colorado State Legislators to take action to address the climate crisis – no expertise needed!
Climate Lobby Day Talking Points (as of Jan. 24, 2020)
There is international scientific consensus that climate change has reached a crisis point. The U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warns that for a 66% chance of keeping global temperature rise below 1.5 °C, we must achieve net neutral greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions before 2040. Considering our historic emissions, access to abundant affordable renewable energy, and our desire to protect life as we know it for future generations, we can and must aim higher. As your constituents and part of the vast majority (77%) of Coloradans who are increasingly concerned about the global climate crisis, our failing air quality, and public health and safety, we call for bold action now!
We urge you to support a Green New Deal for Colorado, including legislation that:
- Halts all new fossil fuel extraction, infrastructure and subsidies, and transition power generation to 100% renewable energy by 2035 or sooner.
- Rapidly decarbonizes agriculture and transportation sectors and expands access to public transportation.
- Ensures a Fair & Just Transition led by impacted workers and communities, including low income and communities of color and veterans, without relying on ineffective corporate schemes or market-based mechanisms.
- Upholds Indigenous Rights.
- Includes a jobs guarantee, creating good jobs with collective bargaining and family-sustaining wages.
Specifically, we call on you to:
- Defund climate disaster by supporting bills to divest public funds from fossil fuel companies and enable banking options for our cities and counties:
- Divest PERA (Public Employees Retirement Association) from fossil fuels – A recent analysis by Corporate Knights concluded that PERA would have generated an estimated additional $1.77 billion in value, had the fund divested its fossil fuel stocks ten years ago. Divestment from failing fossil fuel stocks would save money and ensure viable pensions for Colorado employees. PERA’s 2019 divestment policy maintains that PERA won’t divest unless asked to do so by the General Assembly, so legislative action on this issue is required.
- Banking Options – We support banking choice for cities and counties, including legislation enabling the options to bank with credit unions or form public banks. This will permit cities and counties to keep taxpayer dollars local, investing in local priorities (rather than being obligated to use big Wall Street banks that make risky investments often contrary to our communities’ values, such as funding companies and projects that perpetuate the climate crisis and human rights abuses).
- Support expansion of HB19-1314 – Just Transition from Coal-based Electrical Energy Economy – to all workers in the fossil fuel industry, including oil and gas workers.
- Support the Healthier Homes Act – would direct the PUC to work with utilities to encourage the use of more electric appliances and equipment like heat pumps and water heaters into homes, businesses, and industries, replacing appliances that rely on gas, heating oil, and propane. This Bill would save Coloradoans money and energy, and reduce pollution across the state, helping to obtain our greenhouse emissions reduction goals.
- Support HB20-1064: Public Utilities Commission Study Of Community Choice Energy – authorizes two studies that would assess the feasibility of Community Choice Energy (CCE) in Colorado and answer key questions that would reveal whether CCE would be beneficial to Colorado communities and the State. CCE would permit communities to purchase wholesale electricity through a supplier other than the local investor-owned electric utility. The Bill has the potential to enable communities to meet their renewable energy goals and save money without disrupting the local utility’s current status as sole supplier of transmission, distribution, and customer service functions.
- Fully fund the Colorado Department of Agriculture’s (CDA) Soil Health Program in the Governor’s budget to support Colorado farmers and ranchers in becoming part of the solution to the climate crisis through regenerative agriculture practices and restoring healthy ecosystems. Funding would allow the CDA to provide training and grants for improving soil health using techniques like no/low till, cover crops, crop rotation, rotational livestock grazing, and compost application. These practices 1) aid the environment by building soil fertility, reducing erosion, sequestering carbon and increasing biodiversity, 2) empower ranchers and farmers to reduce the use of chemical fertilizers, herbicides and pesticides, cut overhead, conserve water and energy, become more resilient to extreme weather and improve their bottom line, and 3) strengthen rural economies.
- In addition, we urge you to SUPPORT the following:
- SB20-013 Promote Innovative And Clean Energy Technologies https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-013
- HB20-1047 Develop A Statewide Organics Management Plan https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb20-1047
- HB20-1143 Environmental Justice And Projects Increase Environmental Fines https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb20-1143
- SB20-055 Incentivize Development Recycling End Markets https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-055
- HB20-1004 Assistance Landowner Wildfire Mitigation https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb20-1004
- HB20-1057 Modify Wildfire Risk Mitigation Grant Program https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb20-1057
- HB20-1155 Higher Efficiency New Construction Residence https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb20-1155
- SB20-018 Homeless Outreach Programs To Reduce Wildfire Risk https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-018
- SB20-010 Repeal Ban On Local Government Regulation Of Plastics https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-010
- SB20-061 Yield To Bicycles In Bicycle Lanes https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-061
- HB20-1060 Natural Organic Reduction Human Remains https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/hb20-1060
- We urge you to OPPOSE the following:
- SB20-094 Plug-in Electric Motor Vehicle Registration Fees https://leg.colorado.gov/bills/sb20-094
- HB20-1070 Local Government Liable Fracking Ban Oil And Gas Moratorium and HB20-1126 Local Control Approvals Oil And Gas Applications
- HB 1070 would require local governments to provide compensation if they interfere with oil and gas operations. SB19-181 gave local communities the ability to regulate fracking operations in their jurisdictions to protect public health, safety, and the environment, and they should be able to continue to do so without facing liability.
- HB 1126 would preempt current state law regarding regulation of hydraulic fracturing and permit local governments to force approval of wells that may not comply with state regulations or result in inconsistent regulation of fracking sites.
If you have any questions or suggestions, please contact President@350Colorado.org.
We will follow up with additional legislative suggestions soon. Thank you!