WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) released the following statement today on the fiftieth anniversary of Earth Day:
“Fifty years ago, we celebrated the first Earth Day, hopeful that Americans could lead the way in stopping the dangerous pollution dirtying our air, water, and wildlife habitats. In the decades since, we have had significant victories – with the passage of the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Endangered Species Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act, as well as the signing of international agreements like the Montreal Protocol and the Paris Agreement. The air we breathe and water we drink is cleaner, and our economy has grown, yet more work remains.
“Since that time, we have also seen the rise and urgency of a climate crisis that threatens all nations with rising sea levels, drought, wildfires, and more-frequent and severe weather. We are also living at a time when denial of basic science is rampant, and the Trump Administration dangerously ignores the reality of the climate crisis and is ceding American leadership to other nations while rolling back protections for air, water, and public health.
“As we continue to confront the coronavirus pandemic, let us remember that the same factors driving climate change also put more people at risk from respiratory diseases, like COVID-19. A global challenge requires a global response, which is why we must work across borders to protect our planet and safeguard the most vulnerable from climate change and natural disasters. That’s why House Democrats passed H.R. 9, the Climate Action Now Act, last year in order to reaffirm the principles of the Paris Global Climate Agreement after President Trump withdrew the United States from that accord. It’s why we must also push for America to work in concert with the rest of the world in combatting coronavirus and ensuring that critical, life-saving resources are available to all those who need them.
“House Democrats will not rest as long as this Administration threatens our air, water, and the health of this planet. We will continue to pursue bold initiatives to protect public health and mitigate the effects of climate change. Fifty years after the first Earth Day, we are as resolute as ever in our determination that America must lead the way to protect this planet we share and ensure that it can continue to sustain humanity for generations to come.”