AZ Groups Outline Environmental Goals for 2022 Legislature
Friday, January 14, 2022
An alliance of environmental groups and lawmakers has released an ambitious, wide-ranging set of goals for the 2022 Arizona Legislature.
The coalition of 31 conservation groups and 13 elected officials is backing myriad causes they want legislators and the governor to consider over the next five months.
Rep. Andrés Cano, D-Tucson, lead Democrat on the House Natural Resources, Energy and Water Committee, said lawmakers have options now to stave off future problems, which they should take advantage of while they still can.
"We have an urgent and unique opportunity right in front of us," Cano contended. "Mitigating the drought that we are in and creating a smarter, more sustainable economy will not only save our state in the long run, but it will spur innovation and strengthen our economy."
The coalition's priorities include action on climate change, water supplies, voting rights, environmental justice, land protection and restoration, and other "green issues." Republican lawmakers say they plan to focus on tightening election security, blocking COVID-19 vaccination mandates, and funding and regulating the state's education system.
The conservation groups' list includes several environmental justice issues.
Doug Bland, executive director of Arizona Interfaith Power and Light, wants to improve social conditions often forcing low-income neighborhoods and communities of color to live in substandard conditions.
"Breathable air and drinkable water should be a basic human right, but it's not so in Arizona," Bland argued. "If you live in South Phoenix or Maryvale, the incidence of asthma, especially among children, is three times higher than it is in Scottsdale."
Hazel Chandler, grassroots coordinator for Elders Climate Action, calls Arizona "ground zero" for the effects of a warming planet. She said the debate about whether climate change is real is over.
"We ask the Legislature and Gov. Ducey to pass legislation to develop climate resiliency plans, so Arizona is better prepared for the worsening impacts of climate change," Chandler urged.
The session, which opened this week, is set to run through mid-May.
get more stories like this via email
One of North Carolina's oldest Historically Black Colleges and Universities is finding new ways to help students stay enrolled and graduate. Recent …
A new survey finds 8 in 10 Kentucky parents say afterschool programs could help their child combat social and mental-health struggles by reducing unpr…
A technology that once existed only in science fiction soon could emerge as a viable solution to climate change. The city of Flagstaff has added …
A new report found Texas likely undercounted the number of people who actually live in the state when gathering information for the 2020 census…
Minnesota has more than 10,000 brownfield sites, which are abandoned or idled properties in need of contamination removal. State officials will soon …
By age 35, workers with a bachelor's degree or higher are about twice as likely as workers with just a high school diploma to have a good job - one …
The mayor of Huntington, where more than 200 homes were recently damaged by severe flooding, said now is the state's "one chance" to prevent other …
Alzheimer's disease is one of the leading causes of death in North Dakota, prompting state officials to launch an online dashboard, where the public …