Sunday, January 16, 2022

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A new survey shows discrimination in medical settings affects quality of care; U.S. Supreme Court rejects vaccine and testing mandates for businesses; and New York moves toward electric school buses.

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U.S. House passes a new voting rights bill, setting up a Senate showdown; President Biden announces expanded COVID testing, and Jan. 6 Committee requests an interview with House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy.

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New website profiles missing and murdered Native Americans; more support for young, rural Minnesotans who've traded sex for food, shelter, drugs or alcohol; more communities step up to solve "period poverty;" and find your local gardener - Jan. 29 is National Seed Swap Day.

Businesses, Environmentalists Say Climate Action Urgent as Infrastructure

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Tuesday, September 28, 2021   

CONCORD, N.H. -- Business leaders are urging Congress to take action to curb climate change by supporting the Biden administration's Build Back Better plan, to be voted on this week.

They argued not only will measures to incentivize and invest in clean energy help the U.S. contribute to stopping the most catastrophic effects of climate change, but they can boost local economies.

Jim Doyle, president of the nonprofit coalition Business Forward, pointed to data that showed New Hampshire imported 100% of its fossil fuels in 2019, and switching to in-state renewables could generate $4 billion to buy local energy.

"Most states spend billions and many states spent tens of billions importing coal, oil and gas to power their economies," Doyle observed. "Renewables, solar and wind represent an opportunity to keep that money in state, to essentially 'Buy Local.'"

Opponents of the budget-reconciliation bill contended it goes too far, and $3.5 trillion over a decade is too expensive. But Doyle countered the cost of climate change is too high not to take these steps. He added severe weather and extreme temperatures lead to financial impacts, from spiking commodity prices to disrupting supply chains and damaging plants and equipment.

Rob Werner, New Hampshire state director for the League of Conservation Voters, said among other climate resiliency measures, the national renewable-energy standard, which would require utility companies to get a certain amount of their power from renewable sources, would make a big difference in the Granite State.

"In New Hampshire, that would be very helpful because we have a relatively low renewable portfolio standard on the state level compared to our New England neighbors," Werner explained. "To have a national standard would be very good."

A bipartisan physical infrastructure bill has already been passed by the Senate. In addition to climate resiliency, the Build Back Better bill includes expansions to the social safety net and changes to the tax code.


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