Governor Urges Congress to Act on on Climate Change
Testified Today in Washington, D.C.
Governor Janet Napolitano asked Congress to act quickly to pass climate change
legislation before the end of this year; she also discussed the efforts of Arizona and other states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat global warming. The Governor made the remarks during a testimony today before the House Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming.
"Scientific evidence makes clear that global warming is real and that human activities are
contributing significantly to the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere that is warming
our planet," the Governor said in her testimony. "In the absence of meaningful federal action, it is up to the states to show leadership on this critical issue. And that is exactly what we have done."
She urged Congress to complement actions states have already taken on climate change.
"There is a tremendous opportunity for Congress to help the nation achieve energy independence and reduce these harmful emissions," Napolitano continued. "Congress must reach out to states and not preempt our leadership. Federal legislation should build upon the efforts of the states and provide flexibility for states to take more aggressive action on global warming."
Napolitano's efforts on climate change and protecting the environment include:
Creating the Arizona Climate Change Advisory Group (CCAG) and adopting the Group's
comprehensive set of 49 recommendations for reducing Arizona's greenhouse gas
emissions such as
o Setting a statewide goal to reduce Arizona's GHG emissions to 2000 levels by
2020 and to 50 percent below 2000 levels by 2040
o Directing the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality to adopt the California
greenhouse gas vehicle emissions standards
Reducing state government water consumption by 17 percent compared to 2004 water use
rates and increasing energy efficiency by 4.6 percent since 2002
Strengthening Arizona's water statute by giving cities, towns and counties additional
authority over new developments in the absence of a 100-year water supply
Improving the health of Arizona's forests and bolstering the sustainable use of forest
resources by being the first state to adopt a comprehensive, 20-year strategy that addresses
forest health comprehensively at the state level
Signing the strongest air quality bill in state history to reduce particulate emissions
Working with other states to create The Climate Registry, a multi-state, multi-national
effort to track greenhouse gas emissions and reductions
o Arizona was the very first state to join The Climate Registry
Partnering with several other Western states to establish the Western Climate Initiative
(WCI), which is creating a Western regional cap-and-trade program for greenhouse gas
o Six U.S. states (Arizona, California, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah and Washington)
and two Canadian provinces (British Columbia and Manitoba) are participating as
full partners in the initiative, with numerous other states and provinces taking part
as observers to the effort
Joining governors of the WCI states and seven eastern states to urge six big automakers to withdraw their legal challenges to the California clean vehicle standards.
"Arizonans and Americans are can do' people. Once we establish a goal and timeline, we will put
our brain and muscle power to work to accomplish it," Governor Napolitano concluded. "We need Congress's help to increase energy independence and slow global warming by the establishment of firm standards and realistic deadlines. These are critical elements in solving these problems."
New York Governor Elliot Spitzer also testified before the special committee. A copy of Governor
Napolitano's testimony before the committee is attached.