Senator included similar program in Waxman-Markey, earlier climate bills

WASHINGTON (February 14, 2014) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, today praised the reported inclusion by President Obama in his budget of a $1 billion fund to help states and cities develop new technologies to combat climate change and guard against the impacts we already know are happening.  Senator Markey included similar proposals in the Waxman-Markey climate bill that passed the House in 2009, basing it on a proposal he had originally included in his iCap climate bill introduced in 2008. 

Senator Markey’s legislation was the first to propose a funding mechanism to help states and tribes build resilience to climate change impacts, including extreme weather, water scarcity, decreased water quality, heat waves, droughts, sea level rise, increased air pollution, effects on public health, and ecosystem disruption. The legislation was informed by the work Senator Markey requested from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) that resulted in the GAO’s 2009 report that called for a national adaptation strategy and the need for resources at the state and local level to cope with the impacts of climate change. This report was the foundation for GAO adding the Federal Government’s fiscal exposure to climate change risks to its High Risk List in 2013. 

Below is the statement of Senator Markey: 

“This is a Valentine’s Day present to the planet from the Obama administration. When it comes to climate change, we need to produce the technologies that will solve it, and prepare for the impacts that are resulting from it. This fund will help prepare America, and is further proof that the administration is dedicated to addressing the challenge of our time.

“It’s been clear for years that we need to invest in America’s resilience to climate change. Building climate-smart infrastructure will create jobs that are also good for creation. That’s why I led Congressional efforts to include a funding mechanism to support state and tribal efforts to respond to the impacts of climate change that are already happening and prepare for the future. I look forward to working with President Obama to create the fund he is proposing and will continue to work in the Senate to find additional opportunities to meet the growing needs our country faces in dealing with climate change.”