CT Environmental Rights Amendment Featured at Climate March in Hartford
By Dr. Kimberly Stoner
On Friday, February 2, about 200 people from over 20 organizations marched in Hartford to demand immediate action on climate change by the state legislature, the Lamont administration, and utility and insurance companies in the state. The theme of the march was “Keep CT’s Climate Promise.” There’s a lot to do. In the Global Warming Solutions Act, Connecticut promised to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 to 80% below levels in 2001. We would have to make some dramatic reductions in the next 26 years to meet that goal — and given the rate of climate change, that goal may not be enough. Indeed, one of the demands of the march was to set a more difficult target of reaching net zero greenhouse gases by 2050.
The CT Environmental Rights Amendment was one of the key demands. This amendment to the state constitution would include a safe and stable climate among the human rights of the people of Connecticut, along with clean and healthy air, water, soil, ecosystems, and environment, and would safeguard those rights for present and future generations. Right now, we are calling on the co-chairs of a key committee of the state legislature to bring this amendment forward in the coming legislative session. You can sign a petition to those key legislators here.
Don’t miss the opportunity to hear the national leader of the movement to put environmental rights into state constitutions, Maya van Rossum, at our winter conference coming up in March!
There were a broad range of other demands. Demands of the CT State Legislature in addition to the aforementioned CT Environmental Rights Amendment included:
- Setting a target of net zero greenhouse gases by 2050, along with subtargets for electricity generation, transportation, and other uses,
- Increasing funding for energy efficiency,
- Rapidly increasing solar energy, battery storage, and clean heat through heat pumps, and
- Rapidly reducing greenhouse gases from transportation by adopting advanced standards for clean cars and trucks.
When we arrived at the Capitol, state legislators pledged to include many of these demands in a bill they are developing, to be numbered House Bill 5004. It has not yet been introduced, but when it is, all of our organizations will be watching closely to see if the state legislators are ready to meet the urgency of the moment.
Take Action Now
Sign the petition to key legislators asking them to bring the CT Environmental Rights Amendment forward in the coming session.