To the editor
In addition to slates of candidates, the 2022 election ballot will include one proposal. The act has been approved by the legislature and now goes before the public. The Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act of 2022 will appear on the back of the ballot this way:
“To address and combat the impact of climate change and damage to the environment, the ‘Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act of 2022’ authorizes the sale of state bonds up to four billion two hundred million dollars to fund environmental protection, natural restoration, resiliency, and clean energy projects. Shall the Environmental Bond Act of 2022 be approved?”
The goal is to reduce pollution that impacts health, reduce impacts of floods, protect drinking water, begin the transition to sustainable energy and transportation, and provide good jobs as well as aid to underserved communities. It addresses current impacts of climate change as well as reducing greenhouse gas emissions which further accelerate it.
The proposal includes:
· up to $1.50 billion allocated for reducing air and water pollution; protecting wetlands which can buffer sea-level rise, storm surges, and flooding; green building projects; solar arrays, heat pumps, and wind turbines in public low-income housing areas; zero-emission school buses; more trees in urban areas.
· at least $1.10 billion for reducing flood risk and restoring shorelines; repairing flood-prone infrastructure and roadways; and ecological restoration projects.
· up to $650.00 million for land conservation (including farms) and parks
· at least $650.00 million to improve wastewater, sewage, and septic infrastructure; lead service line replacement; reducing stormwater and agricultural nutrient runoff, and harmful algae blooms.
The proposal is backed by many organizations, including Vote Yes for Clean Water and Jobs, a broad coalition of environmental and labor organizations, the American Lung Association, land trusts, farmers, civic and faith groups, and municipalities and counties.
While some people object to the cost involved, it’s important to recognize that climate related disasters are costing billions of dollars per year. According to the National Centers for Environmental Information at NOAA, since 1980, the nation has experienced 338 weather and climate disasters costing at least $1 billion each, for a total cost of more than $2.295 trillion. And while $4.2 billion sounds large, it’s a small part NYS’s $220 billion budget, and a worthy investment.
Vote YES on Proposal 1.
NYS Board of Elections https://www.elections.ny.gov/2022BallotProposal.html
Vote Yes for Clean Water and Jobs https://voteyescleanwaterandjobs.com
National Centers for Environmental Information at NOAA https://www.ncei.noaa.gov/access/billions/