Thanks to The Richmonder for this video, and to people like Sen. McEachin and Del. Pollard for fighting to protect Virginia’s environment! The press release is on the “flip.”
Senator A. Donald McEachin and Delegate Albert Pollard Discuss
Their Environmental Legislation
Richmond – Senator A. Donald McEachin and Delegate Albert Pollard today held a press conference to discuss their introduced environmental legislation. Senator McEachin has introduced four bills. Senate Bill 814 would have protected the Chesapeake Bay and would have prohibited drilling in the Bay.
Senator McEachin said, “The Chesapeake Bay is a unique resource. It provides jobs for watermen and farmers. It brings us tourist dollars and is home to many important species of plants and animals. The loss of jobs would have a very detrimental impact on our economy and on Virginia families, many of whom have, literally spent centuries living off the Bay.
“My externalities bill would require that, when we consider building a new power plant, like a coal facility, that we take into consideration the public health costs and impact on the local community. This is important because, if there are deleterious impacts, these will cost the Commonwealth, that is, us, the taxpayers, down the road.
“Senate Bill 907 creates inclining block rates for power. In many parts of the Commonwealth, we sell power like warehouse shopping. Like at Sam’s Club or Costco, you get a price break for buying in quantity. The problem with that is that we don’t want people to buy, that is, use a lot of energy. No matter what your opinion on climate change, we all recognize that dependence on fossil fuels is bad for our country’s future and bad for national security. This is a free market way to encourage folks to conserve energy. This would reward people for using less energy in their homes. I would also add that I would like to see increased programs to help and reward people for making their homes more energy efficient. By assisting families with energy efficiency measures like insulation, we will ensure more savings and even less energy usage.
“Finally, Senate Bill 1119 would make it easier for DEQ to consider past performance records when granting permits for landfills.
Delegate Pollard spoke of his bill and the formation of the conservation caucus. He said that we are bringing together “likeminded people who do not necessarily always agree, but want to work together to make a difference. In speaking to his bill, he said, “Virginia’s schools and municipal buildings hold great potential for helping to meet Virginia’s energy needs. By giving the Virginia Resources Authority the authorization to fund municipal renewable energy projects, HB2389 is an integral first step in meeting those energy needs using clean, renewable energy. Furthermore, this legislation will give municipalities the flexibility to plan for the future with the knowledge that they have taken the action necessary to cut energy cost giving our localities more flexibility in meeting local community needs.”
Senator McEachin concluded the press conference by saying, “These issues are too important and we will continue to work at them, to bring people together, to leave the earth a healthier place for our children than we found it.”