California legislators joined students from across the state at the Capitol Monday to call for aggressive action in regards to climate change.
Sen. Henry Stern was among the group of California lawmakers who joined the more than 100 students from the California Public Interest Research Group on the steps of the Capitol. Together, the group proposed to increase climate mobilization efforts by accelerating California’s timeline for achieving aggressive statewide goals.
The draft climate emergency resolution echoes calls by students and artists for bold climate action after California wildfires in 2017 and 2018 killed 151 people, injured at least 291 people, and caused approximately $21.5 billion in damage, a release stated, adding the multi-pronged effort in the Legislature seeks to address a number of growing threats that amount to a “climate emergency.”
A discussion draft of the climate emergency resolution highlights the Legislature’s call for an unprecedented mobilization of financial, technological, natural and human capital between now and 2030, according to the release. The mobilization includes a New Deal-scale commitment of $100 billion of existing funds toward green innovation, infrastructure and workforce development that hopes to put California on an accelerated path to 100 percent clean energy and carbon neutrality by 2030.
“Climate change is an emergency,” Stern said. “It’s burning down our hometowns, undermining our state’s public safety, driving alarming rates of childhood asthma and other new disease vectors like West Nile virus, and keeping middle-class family budgets at the mercy of global oil and gas markets.”
California has gone big with its goals, the senator said, “but we must go bigger if we’re going to make this 2030 deadline to turn things around.”