August 25, 2020

Duckworth, Durbin, Senate Democrats Release New Report on Climate Action, Plan to Build Clean Economy for American People


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), member of the Senate Democrats’ Special Committee on the Climate Crisis, and Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) joined Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senator Brian Schatz (D-HI) and other members of the Special Committee on the Climate Crisis in releasing a comprehensive report titled “The Case for Climate Action: Building a Clean Economy for the American People.” The new report – which comes after dozens of hearings, meetings, and input from experts, labor unions, mayors, environmental justice leaders, and native communities, among others – details how bold climate action from Congress can create millions of new jobs, grow the American economy, and improve people’s lives across the country.

“Climate change is real, it’s happening now and it has serious, dangerous effects—not just to our environment but also to our military readiness,” said Duckworth. “Our troops and military installations face growing risks from more extreme and frequent weather events, including rising sea levels, droughts and storms. But with the right investments and rigorous planning, we can dramatically reduce the risks climate change presents to our national security. I’m proud to join my colleagues in releasing this report that outlines a path forward and actions Congress can take to address this crisis, and I look forward to working towards its goals.”

“Climate change is an existential threat that we cannot ignore. We need bold, comprehensive action backed by science that will push us toward environmental justice and clean energy while creating new jobs. We can accomplish these goals and more by following the roadmap laid out in the Senate Democrats’ Climate Committee report,” said Durbin. “I’m proud to join my colleagues in supporting a path forward that will curb the monumental impact of climate change on our country and will protect our planet for generations to come.”

The Committee’s report calls on Congress to:

  • Reduce U.S. emissions rapidly to achieve 100 percent global net-zero emissions no later than 2050;
  • Stimulate economic growth by increasing federal spending on climate action to at least 2 percent of GDP annually — and ensure that at least 40 percent of the benefits from these investments help communities of color and low-income, deindustrialized, and disadvantaged communities; and
  • Create at least 10 million new jobs.

Along with Duckworth, Durbin, Schumer and Schatz, the report was also released by U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Michael Bennet (D-CO), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV), Martin Heinrich (D-NM), Ed Markey (D-MA), Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Tina Smith (D-MN) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI).

The Senate Democrats’ Special Committee on the Climate Crisis, which is affiliated with the Democratic Policy and Communications Committee, was established in March 2019 and was tasked with investigating, holding hearings, and issuing findings on the economic and national security consequences of climate change and how climate action presents significant opportunities for jobs, public health, and the economy. Since March 2019, the committee held 10 public hearings, convened 10 in-depth meetings with experts, and connected with a broad array of constituencies – in person and through targeted outreach.

The report and supportive statements from organizations is available here.