Climate change is real. I have had eye-opening weather experiences – as a journalist reporting on natural disasters, as well as personal hardships. Our environment is changing and we must focus both on the future for our children and grandchildren – who should be free from extreme heat and destructive floods and have a right to clean air, clean water and a healthy environment – and also protecting Iowans now.
The science is clear – Iowa is already experiencing the damaging effects of climate change today. From worsening storms to hotter temperatures to more frequent flooding events along our rivers, communities across our state are dealing with the effects of climate in more extreme ways each year. You don’t need to read a scientific study to know that; just ask any Iowa farmer.
This crisis affects every single one of us, but instead of tackling these challenges head on, Washington continues to be plagued by partisan fighting and too little action. Year after year, we’ve failed to make the necessary investments in clean energy to put our state, our nation, and the world on a path to success.
Yet there’s some good news right here in Iowa that shows a path forward. By 2020, over half of our electricity as a state was produced by wind turbines, the highest share of any state in the country.1 And we are the largest ethanol and biodiesel producer in the nation, producing one-fifth of the country’s biodiesel despite having less than one-hundredth of the country’s population. Iowa is already at the forefront of our clean energy transformation, and we must continue this focus over the coming decades – creating thousands of good-paying jobs right here in our own backyard along the way.
In Congress, I will fight to:
- Grow our clean energy economy statewide and nationwide so Iowa, and the United States, can be a leader in building the energy system of the future.
- Support our biofuel sector, which plays a major role in our state’s economy while also reducing our reliance on dirtier forms of fuel.
- Make certain as we make transitions to electric fuel to carefully consider the ag economy and ask the farmer to lead conversations on what that change looks like and how it impacts livelihoods.
- Address the threat of climate change, particularly its impact on extreme weather that is making farming all the more challenging in Iowa today.
- Protect the environment and our natural resources, so that our children and all future generations can have clean air to breathe and clean water to drink.
1 “Iowa.” U.S. Energy Information Association