We are in the midst of a global climate crisis. Global sea levels are rising, our oceans are becoming more acidic, temperatures around the world are wildly fluctuating, and glaciers and ice sheets in the arctic are disappearing.
The United States used to be the authority on climate change. In 2015, we were among the 195 countries that signed onto the historic Paris Climate Agreement. The agreement deals with greenhouse gas mitigation and promotes actions and investment for a sustainable low carbon future. The Paris Climate Agreement alone will not end our climate crisis, but it was a step in the right direction. For the first-time ever we saw industrialized nations come together to acknowledge climate change and commit to steps towards action.
Today, we are sadly no longer leading the world on climate issues.In 2017 Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement. We also saw President Trump and Congressional Republicans roll back environmental and safety regulations on the fossil fuel industry, orders for drilling on our federal lands and off our shores for oil, the whitewashing of federal government reports that outline the long-term effects of climate change and attempts to prevent our own intelligence officials from testifying about climate science. There is an ongoing, full out assault on our environment by this President and his Republican allies in Congress and the consequences are going to be severe and long-lasting.
In Southeastern Massachusetts we are on the front lines of the climate crisis. We have endured multiple 100-year storms over the past decade that have reshaped our coastlines and tested our resilience. Marine scientists have recently noted the presence of marine mammals and ocean predators who historically have populated waters to our south, which poses a threat to our native sea life. The temperatures in our oceans are rising and coastal flooding happens far too often. Our way of life is being impacted and it is coming at a great cost.
We don't have any choice- we must not give up on our environment in the face of ignorance by Republicans. I won’t back down and you can’t either, but we can’t just push back against bad policy. We must also push forward on creating and promoting policies that will benefit our planet for generations to come.
I am a proud co-sponsor of the Green New Deal - and just last week I reintroduced the Offshore Wind Jobs and Opportunity Act, which would create grant funding to train a new generation of workers in the offshore wind industry.
In Southeastern Massachusetts we just don’t recognize our climate crisis - we are working to do something about it. Right off our shores we are developing one of the first offshore wind farms in the country, and local agencies and universities are collaborating together to better deal with ocean acidification, while organizations and activists throughout are region working to educate and promote positive climate action.
There is no more debate to be had – the science is clear that we are in the midst of a crisis. Not a crisis of science but instead a political crisis.
The only thing left to do is to outsmart, out-work, and out-organize climate deniers everywhere.
We can’t lose this fight. We have to win.