Press Room - Page 3 of 4 - Maryland Climate Coalition

Bipartisan Maryland Commission on Climate Change Urges Higher State Goal for Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Contact:

Tiffany Hartung, Maryland Climate Coalition, (443) 759-3402, hartungt@nwf.org

 

Bipartisan Maryland Commission on Climate Change Urges Higher State Goal for Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions

On heels of Paris climate talks, state commission recommends strong climate action

Baltimore, M.D.— Today, the Maryland Commission on Climate Change released a report  formally recommending that the Maryland General Assembly extend the state’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act (GGRA) goals to achieve a 40 percent reduction in emissions by 2030 compared to 2006 levels.  Business, health, labor and climate advocates are applauding this move as a necessary step to combat climate disruption and provide clean and safe air for Maryland families, while growing the state’s economy and creating jobs.

“Addressing climate change is an economic opportunity for Maryland,” said Kimberly Armstrong of Abeona Group, a Maryland based clean energy business.   “Today’s report estimates that the benefit to the State’s economy of the current greenhouse gas reduction plan is between $2.5 billion and $3.5 billion by 2020 and will help create and maintain between 26,000 and 33,000 new jobs.  Extending the goals of Maryland’s plan will continue to create jobs and drive investment in the state.”

The Commission is a bipartisan group that was codified into law earlier this year and has been working throughout the year to develop its recommendation. The Commission also looked at how climate change impacts Maryland’s vulnerable communities and included recommendations to ensure that the plan is inclusive and benefits all Marylanders.

“The Commission’s report calls attention to the health benefits that will accrue to Marylanders through the cleaner air that comes with greenhouse gas reductions,” said Rebecca Ruggles of the Maryland Environmental Health Network.

In 2009, Maryland’s GGRA law directed the state to reduce heat-trapping pollution by 25 percent by 2020, and led to the creation of Maryland’s wide-ranging Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan.  Through the plan, Maryland committed to implement smart environmental and economic strategies, such as increasing clean energy use, helping customers save energy and money through Maryland’s EmPower program, and participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI), a regional program that reduces carbon pollution from power plants.

Today’s report confirmed that the state is well on its way to meeting the initial greenhouse gas reduction target, but must build on this progress to protect critical infrastructure, economic prosperity and public health.

“A changing climate and more extreme storms will affect the Port of Baltimore’s docking, navigation channels and will make access roads near ports vulnerable to flooding,” added Joe Uehlein of the Labor Network for Sustainability.  “With a decrease of 1 percent in shipping at the Port of Baltimore between now and 2018, we will lose more than 3,600 jobs — jobs Maryland families cannot afford to lose.  The recommendations of this plan, put out by the Commission, will not only help protect Marylanders but also continue to create family-supporting jobs on our way to a clean energy future.”

“The 2016 Maryland General Assembly session will be a crucial time to renew and strengthen Maryland’s response to climate change,” said Tiffany Hartung of the Maryland Climate Coalition.  “Increasing our greenhouse gas reduction goals, as recommended by the commission, should go hand in hand with increasing our clean energy standard.”

The 2009 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act sunsets in 2016 and will need to be reauthorized by Maryland General Assembly. The General Assembly will also consider expanding Maryland’s renewable portfolio standard, the state’s clean energy standard, to 25 percent by 2020 in the 2016 session.

The Maryland Commission on Climate Change is a bipartisan Commission made up of cabinet secretaries, legislators and stakeholders including union leaders, business and environmental groups.

###

The Maryland Climate Coalition brings together environmental, faith, labor, and civic organizations to advance clean energy and climate policies in Maryland.  For more information about the Maryland Climate Coalition, visit http://www.marylandclimatecoalition.org.

 


In Spirit of Paris Talks, Top Maryland Lawmakers Propose Largest Clean Energy Jobs Plan in State History

For Immediate Release: December 8, 2015

Contact:

Kelly Trout, 240-396-2022 (office), 717-439-0346 (cell), kelly@chesapeakeclimate.org

James McGarry, 914-563-2256 (cell), james@chesapeakeclimate.org

In Spirit of Paris Talks, Top Maryland Lawmakers Propose Largest Clean Energy Jobs Plan in State History

2016 bill will expand wind and solar while creating family-supporting jobs and a diverse clean energy workforce

ANNAPOLIS—As world leaders meet in Paris to marshal global climate action, top Maryland lawmakers came together in Annapolis today to unveil their plan to create the largest dedicated clean energy jobs and business development program in state history.

As part of 2016 legislation to significantly expand Maryland’s use of renewable electricity, Senate Majority Leader Catherine Pugh (D-Baltimore) and Delegate Dereck Davis (D-Prince George’s) are proposing a $40 million plan to train and prepare more Marylanders for careers in clean energy and to bolster minority- and women-owned businesses within the clean energy economy.

The lawmakers announced the plan, called the 2016 “Clean Jobs Act,” during a press conference on Lawyers’ Mall alongside Maryland small business, community college, and job training leaders, and climate advocates.

“Maryland needs to increase our renewable energy standard to 25 percent while putting in place funding to increase the diversity of business owners and workers,” said Sen. Pugh, who sits on the Senate Finance Committee. “The Clean Jobs Act will give more Marylanders the opportunity to thrive in the growing clean technology sector and put cities like Baltimore on the forefront of clean energy development.”

“2016 is the year to pass this ‘Clean Jobs Act’ for Maryland,” said Del. Davis, chair of the House Economic Matters Committee. “This bill will sustain an estimated 2,000 additional clean energy jobs right here in Maryland. The average Maryland solar installer earns nearly $23 per hour. Greater workforce development investments can direct those jobs where they’re needed most, while unlocking the full talent of our state’s clean energy entrepreneurs.”

In co-sponsoring the bill, Sen. Pugh and Del. Davis will join Senator Brian Feldman and Delegate Bill Frick of Montgomery County—lead sponsors of the legislation to expand Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS)—as well as Senator Mac Middleton, chair of the Finance Committee, and Senator Rich Madaleno, vice-chair of the Budget and Taxation Committee.

“I’m proud to sponsor this legislation because addressing climate change and improving our economy go hand in hand,” said Sen. Brian Feldman. “It’s time to lock in Maryland as a leader in both.”

The legislation would ensure that Maryland gets 25 percent of its electricity from clean sources like wind and solar power by 2020, up from the state’s current goal of 20 percent by 2022. By creating incentives for roughly 1,300 megawatts of new clean energy, the bill would significantly improve Marylanders’ air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, which are causing rising sea levels, record storms, and increased flooding.

“Climate change solutions—like cleaner, more efficient energy— mean healthy air and healthy people who can go to work and support their families,said Sen. Madaleno. “All Marylanders deserve clean air to live healthier and more meaningful lives.”

Maryland has met its existing renewable energy standard every year since the RPS program was first implemented in 2005. Maryland now ranks among the top solar states in the nation. Plummeting solar and wind prices and abundant, untapped renewable assets — from sunny rooftops to blustery Eastern Shore farmland — position the state to easily achieve a higher goal. Collectively, Maryland’s policies to address climate change are expected to create 26,000 to 33,000 new jobs and grow wages by tens of billions of dollars by 2020, according to state data.

“Maryland’s solar industry now employs over 3,000 workers, and the industry expects to grow 26 percent this year, adding 750 more jobs,” said Del. Frick. “In 2016, it’s time to speed up this growth while providing better training to more Maryland workers.”

The new workforce development plan within the RPS bill would tap $40 million of unallocated contributions to Maryland’s Strategic Energy Investment Fund. Part of the funding would provide pre-apprenticeship job training in the clean energy sector targeted to areas of the state with high unemployment. Bolstering existing job training programs at Maryland community colleges is one example of how the funds could be put to work.

Gregory Mason, Vice President of Business and Continuing Education at Baltimore City Community College, also spoke at today’s press conference: “Not only is more renewable energy critical to preserving our natural resources, but it also offers a foot in the door for our students to begin and advance careers within a well-paid, burgeoning industry.”

Additional funding would establish a Clean Energy Business Development Fund to help minority- and women-owned businesses enter and grow within the clean energy economy in Maryland.

“We started our business in Maryland in part because of its commitment to expanding clean energy technologies,” said Daniel Wallace, director of Technical Sales for BITHENERGY. “The Clean Jobs Act will significantly enhance the economic imperatives that are necessary for clean energy companies like ours to thrive and to create jobs.”

Today’s announcement adds to growing momentum for climate action in Maryland. Over the past year, legislation to expand Maryland’s RPS law gained support from a broad base of faith, labor, health, social justice, and environmental constituencies — including the NAACP, Maryland Working Families, SEIU, seven Maryland bishops and top ecumenical leaders. Meanwhile, in late October, the state’s bipartisan Climate Change Commission voted unanimously in support of extending and strengthening Maryland’s statutory goal for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

“While world leaders gather in Paris at the biggest global climate summit of this decade, Maryland leaders are stepping up to put concrete solutions into motion,” said Mike Tidwell, director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network and member of the Maryland Climate Coalition. “Our clean electricity standard is our state’s top program for reducing climate pollution. By increasing it, we can build a more just and sustainable economy while doing our part to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

###

 


Baltimore County Residents Join Delegate Dana Stein, Faith and Environmental Leaders for Community Expo on Maryland’s Climate Action

For Immediate Release: October 11th, 2015

Contact:

Tiffany Hartung, Maryland Climate Coalition, (443) 759-3402, hartungt@nwf.org

Joelle Novey, Interfaith Power & Light, (202) 256-1450, joelle@gwipl.org

Seth Bush, Sierra Club, (267) 474-3488, seth.bush@sierraclub.org

 

Baltimore County Residents Join Delegate Dana Stein, Faith and Environmental Leaders for Community Expo on Maryland’s Climate Action

Baltimore County kicked off six-stop, clean energy roadshow highlighting the benefits of increasing Maryland’s renewable energy standard

Owings MillsBaltimore-area legislators, green businesses, and the Maryland Climate Coalition gathered to kick-off the first event in a six-stop “Clean Energy Roadshow” highlighting how Marylanders are taking action on cleaner, more energy efficient solutions at home, in our communities and in Annapolis.

Delegate Dana Stein, Adisa Muse of Maryland Working Families and Jakir Manela of the Pearlstone Center discussed the benefits of expanding the amount of clean, renewable energy Maryland uses and actions Maryland is taking to address climate change.

They were joined by a host of local organizations and businesses that included: The Empowers: energy-saving superheroes, Mom’s Clean Air Force, Groundswell clean energy purchasing groups, Ranger Rick & The National Wildlife Federation, Breathe Easy Home, ZeroDraft Energy Efficiency, Blue Water Baltimore, Baltimore Green Forum, Physicians for Social Responsibility, Gunpowder Valley Conservancy, Interfaith Power & Light, Interfaith Partners for the Chesapeake, Maryland Sierra Club, Baltimore Metropolitan Council’s Air Quality and Bike Safety Program, the Institute for Policy Studies and the Irvine Nature Center.

The 2016 Maryland General Assembly session will be a crucial time to renew and strengthen Maryland’s response to climate change,” said Maryland State Delegate Dana Stein (District 11 Baltimore County) and member of Maryland’s Commission on Climate Change.Maryland’s landmark 2009 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act is up for renewal in 2016, and expanding the state’s clean energy standard to 25 percent by 2020 will be before the General Assembly for consideration.”

Maryland has been addressing climate change impacts through its Greenhouse Gas Reduction Plan, required by the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act.  The plan directs the state to implement the smartest environmental and economic decisions that produce effective climate change strategies.  Strategies include increasing Maryland’s clean energy use and ensuring energy is used in the most efficient ways through the EmPower Program.

According to a report by the Regional Economic Studies Institute at Towson University, fully implementing the policies needed to achieve the 2012 plan goals would result in estimated economic benefits of between $2.5 and $3.5 billion and maintain between 26,000 and 33,000 new Maryland jobs.

One of the top greenhouse gas emissions reducing programs in the Plan is Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS). The Standard sets requirements for Maryland to derive a certain amount of energy from renewables. Increasing the amount of clean, renewable energy that Maryland uses to 25 percent by 2020 will help Maryland meet its greenhouse gas emissions reduction goal and grow the state’s economy.

“Increasing Maryland’s clean energy standard to 25 percent by 2020 means jobs for Maryland, including more public sector jobs, more manufacturing and constructions jobs,” added Adisa Muse of Maryland Working Families. “That is a big win for all of Maryland’s workers and for our communities.”

Increasing Maryland’s renewable portfolio standard would spur significant economic gains. The policy would create nearly 2,000 new jobs per year in the state’s solar industry and spur 4,600 new jobs in the regional wind-power economy. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, Maryland’s solar industry already includes more than 170 companies and 3,000 jobs today.

Advocates are using the hashtag #CleanerMDnow to distribute information about the 2016 legislation and these supporting events.

###

The Maryland Climate Coalition brings together environmental, faith, labor, and civic organizations to advance clean energy and climate policies in Maryland.  For more information about the Maryland Climate Coalition, visit http://www.marylandclimatecoalition.org.


For 85 Maryland Faith Communities, Pope’s Visit Inspires Unified Call for Climate Action in the General Assembly

Note: Contact Kelly Trout at 717-439-0346 (cell)  or kelly@chesapeakeclimate.org to connect with participating congregations in a particular geographic area or denomination.

For Immediate Release
September 25, 2015

Contact:
Joelle Novey, Interfaith Power & Light, 202-256-1450, joelle@gwipl.org
Kelly Trout, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, 717-439-0346 (cell), kelly@chesapeakeclimate.org
Fr. Ty Hullinger, participating Catholic priest from Baltimore, 301-707-7147

For 85 Maryland Faith Communities, Pope’s Visit Inspires Unified Call for Climate Action in the General Assembly

Weekend ‘Climate in the Pulpits / On the Bimah’ events show multi-faith support for raising Md’s clean energy goals

BALTIMORE—On the heels of Pope Francis’ visit to the region, 85 Maryland congregations with over 10,000 members will be preaching about climate justice from the pulpit or the bimah this weekend, reiterating the Pope’s call for climate action during services and special events in Baltimore, Annapolis, Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties, and beyond.

In the spirit of Pope Francis’ call yesterday for “courageous” action from representatives in Congress, faith communities will invite their members to sign postcards to state legislators, urging them to expand Maryland’s renewable energy standard (RPS) to 25% by 2020 and renew the state’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act. These policies are the top ways Maryland can carry out the Pope’s teaching that “highly polluting fossil fuels … need to be … replaced without delay.”

This weekend’s coordinated, multi-faith effort, called “Climate in the Pulpits / on the Bimah,” comes at a crucial time to renew and strengthen Maryland’s Climate Action Plan. The 2009 Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act, Maryland’s legal requirement for reducing carbon pollution, will be up for renewal in the 2016 legislative session. The surest way to reduce emissions is to increase the amount of clean electricity—like solar and wind power—that powers our homes and communities. More than three-quarters (76%) of Maryland Catholics support strengthening Maryland’s renewable energy mandate, according to polling released this week.

“It’s not right that 80% of the energy we use to light our sanctuaries still comes from fossil fuels,” reads the bulletin insert which congregations will distribute to thousands of Marylanders this weekend. “Dirty energy is polluting our air and water and making our children and elders sick … our use of dirty energy is pouring heat-trapping climate pollution into our atmosphere, hurting our poorest neighbors around the world.”

Father Ty Hullinger, who serves three Catholic parishes in Baltimore City, is among over 80 Maryland religious leaders who are bringing “Climate in the Pulpits” to their congregations.

“We’re told in Genesis not to be owners and manipulators of this world, but stewards and caretakers,” said Father Hullinger. “We’re already seeing the impacts of climate change, and the families I work with in Baltimore are personally affected by industrial pollution. The Holy Father’s visit is pushing me and my colleagues to take the call to stewardship more seriously.”

Maryland State Delegate Dereck Davis (D-25 Prince George’s) is participating by speaking on clean energy during the Sunday service at Forestville New Redeemer Baptist Church in District Heights. “Pope Francis has reminded us that addressing climate change is one of the great moral issues of our time,” said Del. Davis. “It is imperative that Maryland acts on climate so that we can create real, broad, and sustainable prosperity.”

Maryland congregations will be participating in different ways. Many plan to have clergy or guest speakers deliver a sermon on climate and Creation care, and to distribute bulletin inserts. Some Jewish communities are studying the Pope’s encyclical on Yom Kippur and some congregations are incorporating Creation care into religious education classes or holding special workshops.

Maryland’s faith community has been a leading voice for stronger clean energy policies over the past year. During the 2015 General Assembly, seven Maryland bishops and senior ecumenical leaders joined over 230 faith leaders in calling on state lawmakers to expand Maryland’s renewable energy standard. Bishop Wolfgang Herz-Lane, president of the Ecumenical Leaders Group of central Maryland, penned an op-ed in the Baltimore Sun this July echoing the Pope’s encyclical on climate change and stressing that “the survival and flourishing of all people depends on our ability to move from temporary and destructive fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.”
Participating congregations include: 

* Saturday, 9/26 in Anne Arundel County, 11 am

St. Philip’s Episcopal Church, 730 Bestgate Rd. Annapolis

Rev. Kip Banks, Sr. of Upper Marlboro will give a Creation care workshop.

Contact: Father Randy Callender, 410-353-6263 randycallender@yahoo.com

* Sunday, 9/27 in Prince George’s County, 10 am – featuring State Del. Dereck Davis

Forestville New Redeemer Baptist Church, 7808 Marlboro Pike, District Heights

State Delegate Dereck E. Davis will speak to the congregation about clean energy during the service starting at 10 am

* Sunday, 9/27 in Baltimore City, 9:30 am

St. James Episcopal Church, 1020 West Lafayette Ave. Baltimore

Rev. Darriel Harris of the Baltimore Food & Faith Project will preach during the Sunday worship service.

* Sunday, 9/27 in Baltimore City, 10:30 a.m. / 11:30 a.m.

St. Dominic Catholic Parish (10:30 a.m), 5302 Harford Road, Baltimore

St. Anthony’s Catholic Parish (11:30 a.m), 4414 Frankford Ave., Baltimore

Father Ty Hullinger will preach during two Sunday worship services

Contact: 301-707-7147 or THullinger@archbalt.org

* Sunday, 9/27 in Anne Arundel County, 10 am

St. Luke’s Eastport, 1101 Bay Ridge Ave. Annapolis

Shantha Ready Alonso of Creation Justice Ministries will preach during the Sunday worship service.

* Sunday, 9/27 in Montgomery County, 10 am service, 11:30 am solar dedication

Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rockville, 100 Welsh Park Dr. Rockville

Dedication of new solar photovoltaic system following the Sunday worship service.

###

 

Climate in the Pulpits is a joint program of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network and Interfaith Power & Light (DC.MD.NoVA).

 Interfaith Power & Light (DC.MD.NoVA) engages hundreds of congregations of all faiths across Maryland and the DC area in saving energy, going green, and responding to climate change. IPL-DMV is one of forty state affiliates of Interfaith Power & Light mobilizing a national religious response to the climate crisis: www.mdipl.org

 The Chesapeake Climate Action Network is the biggest and oldest grassroots organization dedicated to fighting climate change in Maryland, Virginia and Washington, DC. CCAN is building a powerful movement to shift our region away from climate-harming fossil fuels and to clean energy solutions: www.chesapeakeclimate.org.

 

 


230+ Maryland Faith Leaders to Annapolis: Double clean energy in Maryland.

For Immediate Release:    Feb. 24th, 2015

230+ Maryland Faith Leaders to Annapolis:

Our communities pay for dirty energy
with our health and a damaged climate.

Double clean energy in Maryland. 

IN AN UNPRECEDENTED SHOW OF ECUMENICAL RELIGIOUS LEADERSHIP
ON A STATE ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUE, 7 MARYLAND BISHOPS RALLY FAITH SUPPORT FOR
THE MARYLAND CLEAN ENERGY ADVANCEMENT ACT (HB 377/SB 373).

 

Annapolis, MD – As the Maryland Senate’s Finance Committee prepares to take up legislation to double the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard this afternoon, legislators on two key committees were delivered a letter signed by over 230 religious leaders, including 7 bishops and ecumenical leaders, making a moral case for shifting the state to cleaner energy.

Full text of the letter below.

The letter was delivered in Annapolis to members of both the House Economic Matters and Senate Finance Committees. Many of the clergy signers are also calling the legislators’ offices to deliver their message. Rev. Dellyne Hinton (Gwynn Oak United Methodist Church and Central Maryland Ecumenical Council) testified in the House Economic Matters Committee on Friday, and today, Bishop Wolfgang Herz-Lane (DE-MD Synod, ELCA and Ecumenical Leaders’ Group of Maryland) and Rev. Darriel Harris (Baltimore Food & Faith Project at the Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future) will testify in the Senate Finance Committee on behalf of the Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act.

Last night, Rev. Stephen A. Tillett (Asbury Broadneck United Methodist Church) addressed a rally for supporters of the bill in Annapolis.These faith leaders are asking their leaders in Annapolis to recognize energy policy as of particular concern to their communities.

“Caring for God’s creation – including all its inhabitants – means slowing and limiting our use of fossil fuels and significantly reducing our climate pollution,” the letter states. “In order to fulfill that moral imperative, we, the leaders of Maryland’s religious communities, challenge ourselves, our denominational institutions, our congregations collectively and their members individually, fellow people of faith, and all people of good will to take action on climate change by choosing renewable energy sources (such as solar, wind and geothermal), specifically, to move to 40% renewable energy usage by 2025.”

The clergy who joined this effort reflect Maryland’s religious and cultural diversity. Doubling Maryland’s renewable energy has support from leaders in the Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Baha’i, Buddhist, and Unitarian Universalist traditions. The signatories hail from all corners of Maryland.

These clergy from diverse faith traditions and all across the state are responding to a call initiated by the Ecumenical Leaders’ Group, a committee of seven leaders of Christian denominations in Central Maryland.  This marks the first time that this group of senior religious leaders have spoken out together on a matter of environmental concern.

 Full text of letter and list of signatories available here

The Ecumenical Leaders’ Group is made of the bishops, presidents, executives of Christian denominations in Maryland called together by the Central Maryland Ecumenical Council. The ELG meets five times a year and addresses, with one voice, larger justice issues.

The letter effort was convened by Interfaith Power & Light (MD.DC.NoVA), which works with hundreds of congregations of all faiths across the DC metro area to save energy, go green, and respond to climate change: www.gwipl.org.   Joelle Novey, 202-256-1450

 ###


Hundreds Converge on Annapolis to Urge Lawmakers to Increase Maryland’s Clean Energy Goals

For Immediate Release:                                                                                      

Monday, Feb. 23, 2015

Contact:

Kelly Trout, 240-396-2022, kelly@chesapeakeclimate.org

Tiffany Hartung, 248.933.2451, hartungt@nwf.org

 

Hundreds Converge on Annapolis to Urge Lawmakers to Increase Maryland’s Clean Energy Goals

Marylanders ask elected officials to work together for cleaner air and water, improved public health and clean energy jobs

 

Annapolis, MD (February 23, 2015) – With mini-wind turbines spinning in the frigid night air and glow sticks lighting the walkway to the State House, hundreds of Marylanders rallied in Annapolis Monday to show their support for the Clean Energy Advancement Act. Business, health, faith, labor and climate leaders headlined the rally alongside legislators, urging the General Assembly to act in 2015 to expand the state’s goals for clean electricity ahead of a key Senate hearing on the bill.

The Clean Energy Advancement Act (HB 377/SB 373), recently introduced with 16 Senate and 45 House co-sponsors, would gradually raise Maryland’s existing clean electricity consumption mandate, called the “Renewable Portfolio Standard.” The bill would require that 25 percent of Maryland’s electricity comes from clean sources by 2020 and set a trajectory to reach 40 percent by 2025, doubling the current standard. The bill is up for a hearing in the Senate Finance Committee on Tuesday afternoon.

“Ten years ago, we passed the first bill of this type under Governor Ehrlich and there were only a few solar companies in Maryland,” said Senator Brian Feldman, a sponsor of SB 373. “Now we have more than 150 solar companies employing more than 3,000 people. This legislation gives us the opportunity for clean energy to have an even greater impact on our economy.”

The bill comes at a time when Maryland is experiencing the increasingly detrimental effects of relying on fossil fuels—coal, oil, and gas—for energy, including dangerous air pollution, contaminated water and damaging weather:

  •  Last year, 2014, was the hottest year on record worldwide, while recent studies show, Baltimore and Annapolis lead the nation in increased flooding driven by rising sea levels.
  •  Eighty-five percent of Maryland residents live in areas that fail to meet the nation’s clean air standards, and  Maryland has the 8th worst ground ozone level in the nation.
  •  Maryland ranks 5th in the nation in adult asthma and nearly 12 percent of Maryland children have asthma.

 

“Clean energy is putting Marylanders to work and cleaning up the air we breathe. It’s a critical solution to global warming, and to improving the lives of the most vulnerable among us. That’s why every member of the Maryland Latino Legislative Caucus has cosponsored this legislation, and we look forward to seeing it pass this year,” said Del. Joseline Peña-Melnyk, chair of the newly formed Maryland Latino Legislative Caucus.

The Maryland faith community also rallied Monday to express concern about toxic emissions caused by power plants that result in harmful air and water pollution.  The impacts from that pollution are usually worse in communities of color.

“Over 220 religious leaders across Maryland, including the bishops of seven Christian denominations, have joined together to speak out for clean energy,” said Rev. Stephen Tillett, of Asbury Broadneck United Methodist Church, who spoke at Monday evening’s rally. “It’s not right that we still get half of our state’s energy from fossil fuels that pollute the air and make our neighbors sick. Our faith communities are showing that there is a better way.”

The National Academy of Sciences estimates that illness caused by polluting energy sources costs Maryland households an average of $73 per month. A separate analysis shows that a 40 percent clean electricity standard will prevent 200 to 450 deaths per year in Maryland.

“This is a remarkable opportunity for all  Marylanders to let their policymakers know that we want to replace dirty energy making dirty, sick air with clean, renewable energy that makes our air cleaner and healthier,” said Dr. Cindy Parker, President of Chesapeake Physicians for Social Responsibility.   “We want policymakers to make the right choice to support healthy air so children, elders, people with heart or lung diseases like asthma will live longer, happier, more productive lives with much less suffering from asthma attacks, hospitalizations, and lost work and school days. “

In addition to reducing significant health costs, doubling Maryland’s renewable portfolio standard would spur significant economic gains. The policy would create nearly 1,600 new jobs per year in the state’s solar industry and spur 18,000 new jobs in the regional wind-power economy. According to the Maryland Clean Energy Center, clean energy jobs already generate more than $8.2 billion in associated salaries and wages in Maryland on an annual basis.

“The Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act means more jobs for Maryland, including more public sector jobs, more manufacturing and constructions jobs,” added Charly Carter, Executive Director of Maryland Working Families. “That is a big win for all of Maryland’s workers and for our communities.”

“As the seas rise along Maryland’s shores, a grassroots movement for change is rising up, too,” said Mike Tidwell, director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network. “We’re here today to tell our legislators that we have a moral obligation to act, and we also have an opportunity to act. By getting more of our electricity from the wind and the sun, we will protect our children while growing our economy.”

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS:

Advocates are using the hashtag #CleanerMDnow to distribute information about the legislation and these supporting events.

On Tuesday, February 24th at noon, ahead of a Senate Finance Committee hearing, two Maryland bishops will join other faith leaders for a tele-press conference, unveiling a letter signed by over 200 clergy of all faith traditions who are calling on legislators to expand clean energy. Journalists can join the tele-conference by dialing (605) 477-2100 and using passcode 306196#.

 ###

 The mission of the Maryland Climate Coalition is to unite Marylanders to mitigate climate change to protect our environment, health, and economy. The Coalition works with a broad range of partners engaging in policy advocacy, grassroots organizing, and public education. For more information about the Maryland Climate Coalition, visit http://www.marylandclimatecoalition.org.

 


Business Leaders Urge Lawmakers to Raise Maryland’s Clean Energy Goals as Hearings Begin in Annapolis

For Immediate Release
Friday, February 20, 2015

Contact:
Kelly Trout, 717-439-0346 (cell), 240-396-2022kelly@chesapeakeclimate.org
Jeff Benzak, 202-513-6248jeff@e2.org

Business Leaders Urge Lawmakers to Raise Maryland’s Clean Energy Goals as Hearings Begin in Annapolis

Leaders say legislation will expand job growth and economic development while reducing costly air and climate pollution

ANNAPOLIS—Maryland lawmakers would help spur good-paying jobs and economic development by passing legislation in 2015 to expand the state’s use of clean, renewable energy, said business leaders and workers who came to Annapolis today to testify before a key House committee.

During a morning press conference with the bill’s lead sponsors, renewable energy entrepreneurs—including a former Army Major General—emphasized that a region-leading clean electricity goal would establish Maryland as a regional hub for investment in the fast-growing solar and wind industries.

“This legislation will lock in Maryland as a leader in the clean technology sector, expanding jobs and prosperity while diversifying our economy,”said Senator Brian Feldman, lead Senate sponsor of the Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act (HB 377/SB 373).

“This is a clear instance where cleaning up our air and water means putting people to work,”said Delegate Bill Frick, lead House sponsor of the bill. “Maryland’s solar industry now employs 3,000 workers, growing by 29 percent in 2014. In 2015, it’s time to speed up this growth by expanding our state policy.”

The legislation, which has a hearing in the House Economic Matters Committee this afternoon, would gradually raise Maryland’s existing “Renewable Portfolio Standard,” which requires that an increasing amount of the state’s electricity comes from clean sources like wind and solar power. The bill would require that 25 percent of Maryland’s electricity come from clean sources by 2020 and set a trajectory to reach 40 percent by 2025, doubling the current standard.

Among the press conference speakers was Roger Blunt, a founder and chairman of Essex Construction who is also a retired U.S. Army Major General, a former director of Pepco, and a former director of the Maryland Chamber of Commerce. Essex is a Prince George’s County-based business that specializes in clean energy building projects.

“For the good of our economy, and for the good of our veterans, we need to pass the Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act,” said Blunt. “By raising our renewable energy standard, we’ll send a strong market signal that Maryland is the place for solar and wind manufacturers to set up shop. We’ll also expand a growing clean energy workforce that employs a high percentage of veterans like me.”

Maryland is already first in the Mid-Atlantic region for green jobs per capita. Analysis shows that doubling Maryland’s use of renewable energy would create nearly 1,600 new jobs per year in the solar industry, which are well-paid and diverse. The policy could create 18,000 new jobs across the regional wind power supply chain, providing an economic lifeline to Maryland’s windy Eastern Shore and reinvigorating the state’s manufacturing base.

Executives of Baltimore-based BITHENERGY, Inc., a firm that has developed, financed, and integrated over 33 megawatts of solar projects, underscored that state policy is key to attracting businesses like theirs to Maryland.

“When we started BITHENERGY a few years ago, we had the option of starting the company in any number of states,”said Robert L. Wallace, the president and CEO of BITHENERGY. “We chose the State of Maryland because of its commitment to expanding clean energy technologies and creating an economic environment that made it attractive to companies like BITHENERGY. The passage of HB 377 would significantly enhance the economic imperatives that are necessary for clean energy companies like BITHENERGY to thrive and to accelerate job formation.”

“E2 has tracked more than a quarter-million clean energy jobs nationwide the past three years, and what we’ve seen is this: states with the strongest clean energy policies get the jobs,” said Bob Keefe, executive director of Environmental Entrepreneurs, a national nonpartisan business group. “If Maryland wants more clean energy jobs, it should increase the renewables standard.”

In addition to delivering significant economic benefits, the Clean Energy Advancement Act would reduce the costly impacts of relying on fossil fuels—coal, oil, and gas—for energy, including dangerous air pollution, contaminated water and damaging weather. More than 85 percent of Marylanders live in areas that fail to meet the nation’s clean air standards. Increasing the state’s clean electricity standard is the top way the state can reduce the planet-heating emissions raising sea levels and fueling strange and severe weather in Maryland.

Sustainable Energy Advantage, LLC (SEA), an independent renewable energy consulting and advisory firm, found that the ratepayer impact of increasing Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) to 40% by 2025 will likely be just under $2 per month per residential ratepayer (in 2014 dollars) in 2025. The ratepayer impact of increasing Maryland’s RPS to 25% by 2020 will likely be $0.52 per month per residential ratepayer (in 2014 dollars) in 2020.

See a fact sheet (PDF) on the economic benefits of HB 377/SB 373: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/MCC_Forward-with-Clean-Energy-Jobs-Fact-Sheet-1-26-15.pdf

View the executive summary (PDF) of the Sustainable Energy Advantage, LLC ratepayer impact analysis: http://chesapeakeclimate.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/Ratepayer_Analysis_Full_Report_Final_execSum.pdf

NOTE TO JOURNALISTS:

Friday’s press conference kicked off a series of events demonstrating broad support for the bill among Maryland businesses, faith communities, public health advocates, labor leaders, social justice and environmental groups. Advocates are using the hashtag #CleanerMDnow to distribute information about the legislation and these supporting events:

On Monday, February 23rd from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m., hundreds of citizens will join legislators, faith, labor, and health leaders for a rally on Lawyers’ Mall to pass the Clean Energy Advancement Act, capping off the Maryland Climate Coalition’s citizen lobby night on the bill.

On Tuesday, February 24th at noon, ahead of a Senate Finance Committee hearing, two Maryland bishops will join other faith leaders for a tele-press conference, unveiling a letter signed by over 200 clergy of all faith traditions who are calling on legislators to expand clean energy. Journalists can join the tele-conference by dialing (605) 477-2100 and using passcode 306196#.

###


Marylanders Rally on First Day of General Assembly Session to Double State’s Clean Energy Goals

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:    Wednesday, January 14th, 2015

Contact:

Adam Beitman, Sierra Club, 202.670.5585 or adam.beitman@sierraclub.org

Tommy Landers, Chesapeake Climate Action Network, 301.442.0134 or tommy@chesapeakeclimate.org

Jeff Benzak, Environmental Entrepreneurs, 202.513.6248 or jbenzak@e2.org

Talya Tavor, Environment Maryland, 847-997-0564 or talya@environmentmaryland.org

 

Marylanders Rally on First Day of General Assembly Session to Double State’s Clean Energy Goals

Environmental, business, faith, labor and social justice leaders call legislation a top priority to pass in 2015

ANNAPOLIS, MD — As the 2015 Maryland General Assembly kicked off Wednesday, activists packed Lawyer’s Mall in front of the State House to call for action in 2015 to double the state’s use of clean electricity like wind and solar. The rally was headlined by a broad array of social justice, environmental, faith, labor and business leaders, who declared the historic clean energy bill a priority to pass in 2015 for the climate, the economy and health.

“Maryland needs to get out front of the burgeoning clean energy industry in this country. It will mean good paying jobs and a much needed boost to our economy. Other states are advancing on clean energy, and Maryland has a golden opportunity now to get ahead of the curve with this legislation,” said Sen. Brian Feldman, Democrat from district 15 and chief sponsor of the legislation in the Senate.

The Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act of 2015 will double Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) requirement to 40% clean electricity by 2025. The current state RPS requires 20% of the state’s electricity to come from renewable sources by 2022. The RPS was originally signed into law in 2004 by former Republican Governor Bob Ehrlich. Maryland utilities are currently on track to surpass the current standard, providing Marylanders with 10.3% of energy purchased from renewable sources in 2014.

“Marylanders are ready for this move forward on clean energy,” said Susan Cochran of the League of Women Voters of Maryland. “We can and must pass this legislation to double our clean energy use.”

Dozens of activists packed Lawyer’s Mall for the event, holding “Forward with Clean Energy” signs and waving small handheld wind turbines. A poll released last week showed that more than two-thirds of Maryland voters—or 69 percent—support raising the state’s clean electricity standard to 40% by 2025.

“A 40 percent renewable energy standard would make Maryland a national leader in clean energy and super-charge the market for good-paying clean energy jobs,” said Bob Keefe, executive director of Environmental Entrepreneurs, a national nonpartisan business group. “Lawmakers should seize this opportunity for the good of the state’s economy and its environment.”

The solar industry in Maryland now surpasses the state’s iconic crab industry in total economic value. Doubling Maryland’s renewable portfolio standard would create nearly 2,000 new jobs per year in the state’s solar industry and spur over 20,000 new jobs in the regional wind-power economy.

The promise of good clean energy jobs and cleaner air and water also drew support from Maryland’s health care workers. “The health care workers of 1199 SEIU support expanding Maryland’s renewable energy portfolio because climate change is a public health crisis,” said Pat Lippold, political director of 1199 SEIU United Healthcare Workers East. “The impacts fall disproportionately on Maryland’s communities of color and poorest communities, which suffer from more polluted air and higher rates of breathing problems.”

“Climate change is already having direct negative impacts on our lives, families, and communities, and those impacts will only get much worse in the coming years,” stated Gerald Stansbury, President of the Maryland State Conference of the NAACP. “That’s why climate change is a civil rights and an economic justice issue. At the same time, doubling our clean energy will greatly benefit our communities. It will help clean up our air, put people to work, and seriously address climate justice.”

Currently, more than 85 percent of Marylanders live in areas that fail to meet the nation’s clean air standards, and the National Academy of Sciences estimates that illness caused by polluting energy sources costs Maryland households an average of $73 per month. A separate analysis shows that a 40% clean electricity standard will prevent 200 to 450 deaths per year in Maryland.

“Children are among the most vulnerable to climate change, especially from extreme heat events, widespread disease and increased air pollution,” said Trisha Sheehan, Northeast Regional Field Manager for Moms Clean Air Force.  “Maryland has the ability to double its use of clean energy by 2025. We need to act now to cut our reliance on the dirty fossil fuels that are polluting our air and making us sick.”

Maryland faith leaders also joined Wednesday’s rally. The Ecumenical Leaders’ Group, representing seven denominations of Christian churches throughout Maryland, voted this fall to endorse a 40% clean electricity standard for Maryland. Since that announcement, more than 100 religious leaders representing diverse faith traditions have signed onto their call, which includes a commitment that congregations also reach 40% clean energy.

“This opportunity to source 40% of Maryland’s energy from renewable sources by 2025 is a step in the direction of stewardship, a sign of respect to God and fulfilling our God-given responsibility to creation,” said Reverend Ryan Sirmons, United Church of Christ Annapolis.

 #  #  #

The mission of the Maryland Climate Coalition is to unite Marylanders to mitigate climate change to protect our environment, health, and economy. The Coalition works with a broad range of partners engaging in policy advocacy, grassroots organizing, and public education. For more information about the Maryland Climate Coalition, visit http://www.marylandclimatecoalition.org.

 


Business Leaders and Advocates Ask Lawmakers to Double Wind and Solar Power During 2015 Maryland General Assembly; Poll released shows strong voter support for action

 FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Thursday, January 8, 2015

CONTACT:

Kelly Trout, 240-396-2022, kelly@chesapeakeclimate.org

Tommy Landers, 301-442-0134, tommy@chesapeakeclimate.org

 Business Leaders and Advocates Ask Lawmakers to Double Wind and Solar Power During 2015 Maryland General Assembly

Poll released shows strong voter support for action

 ANNAPOLIS—Business leaders and advocates today called on Maryland lawmakers to pass legislation to double the state’s use of clean electricity like wind and solar power during the 2015 Maryland General Assembly. During a morning tele-press conference, the leaders emphasized that such a policy would deliver huge jobs and economic gains for Maryland, in addition to dramatically reducing costly global warming pollution. According to polling data also released during the call, over two-thirds of Maryland voters back the proposal, which would require that 40% of the state’s electricity come from renewable sources by 2025.

“There are few sectors in Maryland’s economy that are more promising than the clean energy sector in terms of jobs and growth,” said Maryland Senator Brian Feldman (D-Montgomery), a chief sponsor of the Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act of 2015. “Solar is bigger than the crab industry now in this state. This legislation helps expand that prosperity with a sound policy that creates investment certainty for businesses and consumers.”

Analysis shows that doubling Maryland’s existing clean energy mandate, called the Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS), would support nearly 2,000 new jobs per year in Maryland’s solar industry and spur over 20,000 new jobs in the regional wind-power supply chain. Business experts emphasized that, by setting a region-leading 40% clean electricity standard, state lawmakers would establish Maryland as a regional hub for clean energy investment and spur a resurgence in manufacturing and construction jobs.

“Thanks to forward-looking clean energy policies like this, renewable energy is moving into the mainstream for business,” said Stu Dalheim, Vice President at Calvert Investments, a nationally prominent firm based in Maryland. “A majority of the country’s largest companies have clean energy targets and investors are ready for public policies that push further in creating sustainable, home-grown energy jobs that are good for the climate. It just makes sense. This is a good bill for Maryland and the country.”

The polling released today, conducted by the non-partisan, independent firm OpinionWorks, confirmed that broad majorities of Maryland voters back the policy:

  • More than two-thirds of Maryland voters—or 69 percent—support raising the state’s clean electricity standard to 40% by 2025, understanding that it would add less than $2 per month to the average home electricity bill.
  • By two-to-one, voters are more likely to support an elected official during the next election who votes to double Maryland’s clean energy requirement.
  • Further, 70 percent of those polled believe that reliance on fossil fuels is harmful to people’s health.

 

The Maryland Clean Energy Advancement Act expands a current state law called the Renewable Portfolio Standard, or RPS, which was originally signed in 2004 by Republican Governor Robert Ehrlich. The RPS requires that Maryland electricity suppliers purchase an increasing percentage each year of wind, solar and other forms of renewable energy. The new legislation would gradually accelerate the yearly trajectory of Maryland’s standard to 40% clean electricity by the year 2025. (The current law is 20% by 2022). The proposed expansion bill comes on the heels of California’s announcement Monday that it will set a 50-percent clean power target.

“States with the best renewable energy standards are the states that create the most clean energy jobs,” said Bob Keefe, Executive Director of Environmental Entrepreneurs, a national nonpartisan business group that advocates for smart policies that are good for both the environment and the economy. “These are jobs that pay better than average and can’t be off-shored and are helping both our economy and our environment. Maryland is rife with opportunities for more renewable energy, and there’s no reason places like Massachusetts and New Jersey and North Carolina should be outpacing Maryland in solar and other areas.”

Walt Wunder, president of Aeronautica Windpower, LLC, said: “As an American-owned wind turbine manufacturer with products installed in Maryland, Aeronautica Windpower applauds Maryland’s efforts to expand its use of renewable energy from the wind and sun. We have watched as other states and countries which embrace renewables improve their economy by increasing employment and stabilizing the cost of electricity. Maryland has the renewable resources to be a national leader in this respect, and the 40 percent standard is the way to get there.”

Tommy Landers, Maryland Policy Director for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network and a representative of the Maryland Climate Coalition, said: “We can and must pass legislation in 2015 to double wind and solar power for Maryland.  As Maryland moves forward with clean energy, we will move forward on jobs, forward on health, and forward on climate action. That’s why this bill is a top priority of a large and growing coalition of business leaders, environmentalists, faith leaders, public health groups, labor unions, and social justice advocates.”

On January 14, the first day of the Maryland General Assembly session, activists will join Maryland climate, business, labor, and social justice leaders for a 10:30 a.m. rally on Lawyer’s Mall calling for action in 2015 to double Maryland’s clean electricity standard.

View a summary of the OpinionWorks polling released today and commissioned by the Maryland Climate Coalition:

http://marylandclimatecoalition.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/OpinionWorks-Climate-Poll-Fact-Sheet-1-8-15.pdf

 

###


Coalition Launches Campaign to Pass Nation-Leading Clean Energy Legislation

For Immediate Release
October 17, 2014

Contact:
Mike Tidwell, 240-460-5838, mtidwell@chesapeakeclimate.org
Josh Tulkin, 650-722-3171, Josh.Tulkin@mdsierra.org

Wading into Baltimore’s Rising Waters, Coalition Launches Campaign to Pass Nation-Leading Clean Energy Legislation

 

NAACP, Maryland Working Families, Baptist Reverend, health professionals and students join business and environmental leaders in calling on state lawmakers to double Maryland’s commitment to clean electricity in 2015

BALTIMORE – At a podium half-submerged in the Baltimore Harbor, public-interest leaders today launched a broad-based campaign aimed at doubling Maryland’s clean energy goals for wind and solar power in the 2015 legislative session.

Representatives from faith, health, social justice, student, business and environmental groups began Friday’s press conference standing up to their hips in water along Baltimore’s vulnerable harbor to dramatize the threat of sea-level rise. The leaders pointed to several recent climate change studies painting a flooded future for Maryland’s largest city and its capital city Annapolis. In response, the leaders underscored the urgency of transitioning Maryland off of planet-heating fossil fuels, and they declared their top energy priority in Annapolis in 2015 will be passing a 40 percent clean electricity standard.

Specifically, the legislation to be introduced would require utilities to obtain 40% of their electricity from clean sources by 2025, effectively doubling the existing requirement of 20% by 2022 under Maryland’s Renewable Portfolio Standard law. In addition to the exceptionally strong and diverse coalition assembled in-person on Friday, leaders shared a new letter signed by 21 prominent local, statewide and national groups endorsing the campaign and a recently published letter by Bishop Wolfgang Herz-Lane, President of the Ecumenical Leaders Group, endorsing the campaign.

“This fall, supported by the work of Interfaith Power & Light, Maryland’s religious communities have renewed our commitment to stewardship and care for all God’s creation,” said Reverend Darriel Harris of the Baltimore Food & Faith Project. “This morning, we challenge our leaders in Annapolis to do the same.”

The Ecumenical Leaders’ Group — representing seven denominations of Christian churches throughout Maryland — recently voted to endorse a 40% clean electricity standard for Maryland. In less than a month, forty religious leaders representing diverse faith traditions have signed onto their call.

Maryland’s official greenhouse gas reduction plan, released in 2013, identifies strengthening the state’s clean electricity standard as the most powerful single policy tool available to lawmakers. Polling released earlier this week indicates that 65 percent of Marylanders support doubling the state’s target to 40% by 2025.

MD 40 percent presser land 10-17

“Poor communities and communities of color here in Maryland are suffering at the hands of the fossil fuel industry,” stated Gerald Stansbury, President of the Maryland State Conference of the NAACP. “2015 can be the year that Maryland takes the biggest step we’ve taken yet to right that wrong.”

Maryland still gets more than half of its energy from dirty coal and gas. In addition to threatening cities like Baltimore and Annapolis with rising sea levels and increased flooding, these fuels threaten Marylanders’ health, with the impacts disproportionately harming low-income communities and communities of color.

“By cutting our addiction to fossil fuels, we will not only be ensuring a safer — and drier — future, we will also be improving the health of every Maryland resident starting today,” said Dr. Gina Angiola, MD, a board member of Chesapeake Physicians for Social Responsibility. “Our state has the dubious distinction of being the worst in the Eastern U.S. for ground-level ozone pollution, and MIT recently found that Baltimore City has the highest rate of premature death in the nation due to air pollution. This isn’t a problem we can afford to ignore.”

Baltimore native Christine Keels, a lifelong asthma sufferer, emphasized that Baltimore residents suffer from this air pollution every day. “I carry a medical supply kit with me everywhere I go. As an asthma patient, I think about how dirty the air is every day when I wake up,” said Keels. “For once, I’d just like to drive with the windows down and take a deep breath.”

Business leaders emphasized that, by passing a nation-leading clean electricity standard, state lawmakers have an opportunity to establish Maryland as a regional hub for clean energy jobs and investment.

“Doubling our commitment to clean energy means more jobs for Maryland, including more public sector jobs, more manufacturing and constructions jobs,” added Charly Carter, Executive Director of Maryland Working Families. “That is a big win for workers and our communities.”

Bruce Chatman, CEO and President of Essex Renewable Power LLC, said, ”Doubling our commitment to clean energy in Maryland means more companies like mine, employing more Marylanders – from engineers to construction employees, from blade, battery and solar panel manufacturers to gearbox makers, from electricians to operators – working for Maryland-based small businesses building the new clean energy economy.”

The coalition declared that they will continue building bigger and broader support for doubling Maryland’s clean energy goals, and plan to bring a powerful statewide grassroots movement with them to Annapolis in 2015.

“Addressing climate disruption is a moral obligation, but more importantly it is an opportunity to build a brighter future for Maryland based on renewable, clean power,” said Josh Tulkin, State Director of the Sierra Club, Maryland Chapter, who spoke on behalf of the Maryland Climate Coalition. “Doubling our state’s commitment to renewable energy, to 40% by 2025, means progress not just on climate and public health, but also on jobs and economic leadership for Maryland. The Sierra Club is ready to do everything we can to pass this legislation in 2015.”

“Flooding that used to occur just a day or two a year has become increasingly common, more so in Baltimore and Annapolis than nearly anywhere in the country,” said Mike Tidwell, director of the Chesapeake Climate Action Network, and also a member of the Maryland Climate Coalition. “But just as the tides are rising, so is a grassroots movement demanding action. This movement will be sweeping Annapolis come January with one goal: doubling our state’s clean power supply.”

PHOTOS: https://www.flickr.com/photos/chesapeakeclimate/sets/72157648809030601/

RESOURCES:

###

The mission of the Maryland Climate Coalition is to unite Marylanders to mitigate climate change to protect our environment, health, and economy.