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Shaheen & Hassan Respond to Findings for Northeast Region in Federal Climate Change Report

(Washington, DC)— U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) issued the following statements after the Trump administration released on Friday a report on the effects of climate change, which includes specific findings for the Northeast region. The report details the profound impact climate change is having, and will continue to have, on the region’s environment, economy and public health:  

“Ignoring climate change is not an option,” said Shaheen. “This report makes it clear that every Granite Stater is impacted by climate change, and the threat to our state will worsen over time unless aggressive action is taken. These findings should compel the Trump administration and Republican leadership in Congress to finally face the facts and work across the aisle to address this threat to New Hampshire and the planet. This report also praises the region’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and suggests that it could serve as a model for the nation. I wholeheartedly agree, and urge leaders in Concord to maintain New Hampshire’s leadership in controlling harmful greenhouse gas emissions through RGGI. It’s time for the nation to catch up to the Northeast region in tackling climate change head-on.”

“There is no question that climate change is having very real and very serious consequences for our economy, environment, and way of life – and we need action now,” said Hassan. “From our maple syrup and ski industries to our coastal infrastructure, this report details the negative impact that climate change is having in the Northeast region and makes it abundantly clear that the economic impacts will worsen dramatically if we fail to take urgent and meaningful action. New Hampshire and the Northeast have helped lead the way through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, and I urge the President, his Administration, and Republicans in Congress to acknowledge the scientific facts and join us in addressing this massive challenge.”

Among the findings in this report for the Northeast region:

  • Climate change threatens coastal marshes, fisheries, ecosystems and coastal infrastructure;
  • In particular, warming waters are a direct threat to lobster and cod catches;
  • Increased precipitation will lead to more inland flooding;
  • Warming weather will lead to poorer air quality and allergens, with health-related impacts;
  • Winters are warming three times faster than summers, which is leading to a shorter snow season for winter tourism;  
  • Shifting seasonality is negatively affecting the health of forests and harming migratory patterns of birds and parasite infections for animals such as moose;
  • Changing seasons are also threatening maple syrup production because of increased variability in the tapping season;
  • And coastal and inland flooding will necessitate investments in aging infrastructure.

The report can be read in its entirety here.

Senator Shaheen has led efforts in the Senate to combat climate change. As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Shaheen traveled to Paris to participate in high-level discussions at the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference that led to the international Paris climate accord. As a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Senator Shaheen helped secure increased funding for several energy efficiency and renewable energy programs at the Department of Energy as part of the omnibus funding bill for fiscal year 2018. Shaheen has also consistently spoken out in opposition to the President’s anti-environment agenda, and cosponsored legislation that would rescind President Trump’s anti-climate executive order and restore our nation’s leadership role in the fight against global climate change.

Senator Hassan has long fought to protect natural resources and mitigate the impacts of climate change. Senator Hassan spoke on the Senate floor earlier this year about the urgent need to act to combat climate change, and introduced a bill to create a national study on net metering, which would help support the growth of clean energy and work to reduce the release of toxic emissions into the air. As a State Senator and then as Governor, Senator Hassan worked to create and strengthen the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and New Hampshire’s Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) to maintain and grow the state’s clean, renewable energy sector. She also worked across party lines as Governor to raise the net metering cap in order to boost New Hampshire’s solar industry and ensure that it can continue to grow and thrive.