Protecting Our Planet
Our kids deserve a future with clean air and water
The reason I decided to enter this race is because I’m gravely concerned about the world my daughters will inherit. The narrative surrounding climate change often gets muddied with political agendas and misinformation. The reality is that we can incentivize both individuals and businesses to switch to renewable energy sources while creating good jobs, uplifting rural communities, and protecting ratepayers’ pockets. Congress can enact legislation that requires renewable resource companies to staff their workforces with locals rather than out-of-state employees, all while ensuring a just transition for those local workers. Our children deserve a future that has clean air, clear water, and good-paying jobs for working families.
As your Congressman, I will prioritize:
- An immediate, just transition to renewable energy sources, with incentives for individuals and businesses to make the switch away from fossil fuels and toward wind, solar, hydro and biofuels. A just transition for fossil fuel workers guarantees salary matches, housing assistance, affordable healthcare, pension support, job training, and priority job placement.
- Creating a progressive corporate tax on all carbon emissions from giant energy conglomerates. Unlike pay-to-pollute programs like RGGI, a carbon tax will help us decarbonize at an effective pace while generating an annual revenue average of approximately $200 billion over 20 years. That revenue will be used to prevent energy mega-corporations from passing on the costs to ratepayers.
- Using carbon tax revenue to create financial incentives for localities that opt not to extract their natural resources.
- Why it matters in the 5th District: Pittsylvania County contains the largest known deposit of uranium in the U.S. Extracting the uranium is known to be incredibly destructive to public and environmental health. Instead, carbon tax revenue could be used for direct payments to the county that match or exceed the mining revenue. Localities like Pittsylvania County could apply those funds directly to fixing critical infrastructure like schools, roads, and affordable housing, all while leaving local ecosystems undisturbed.
- Developing a network of green jobs within Virginia to facilitate our large-scale transition to renewables. These will be union jobs with benefits that pay a living wage in construction, manufacturing and technology.
- Making significant infrastructure investments to help communities build resilience to climate change, including federal funds to help state and local governments bury power lines, replace aging, brittle asphalt with permeable pavers, and build seawalls to mitigate the effects of a rapidly changing climate.
- Expanding funding for Federal Transit Administration Grants to fund investments in light rail that will connect our district’s transportation hubs, and help secure funds for buses, subways and trolleys inside our smaller towns and cities.