Energy and Environment
Energy and Environment
“There is no issue more critical to the future of our world and community than protecting the environment and ensuring that we are investing in clean and renewable energy. As a Member of Congress, as an American, and as a father, I feel a keen sense of obligation to care for our environment and the other creatures that share the Earth with us, and invest in the future by adopting an Apollo Project-like effort to transition us from fossil fuels. As President Theodore Roosevelt said, ‘The nation behaves well if it treats the natural resources as assets which it must turn over to the next generation increased, and not impaired, in value.”
– Rep. Adam Schiff
Fighting Climate Change
Rep. Adam Schiff believes climate change is an urgent and existential crisis with immense consequences for our environment, food supply, global economy and national security. Schiff is a cosponsor of the Green New Deal and supports decisive action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, lessen our dependence on fossil fuels, protect clean air and water, and invest in green infrastructure jobs. Schiff has also been a strong supporter of proven methods to mitigate the effects of climate change and air pollution: for more than a decade, he has urged that we adopt an Apollo Project-like effort to transition to renewable energy, with the same dedication and determination as it took to land on the moon. He has opposed misguided and dangerous attempts to roll back environmental protections and to strip the Environmental Protection Agency of its authority to regulate air pollution, which would harm countless families across the country particularly those in large urban areas like Los Angeles.
Supporting Renewable Energy
Rep. Adam Schiff continues to fight to grow America’s renewable energy industry, particularly in California. He supports tax credits and loan guarantees for renewable energy research and has successfully offered several amendments to increase funding for advanced energy research at the Department of Energy. Schiff strongly opposes opening the California coast to oil and gas drilling and has consistently voted against legislation that would allow drilling off the coast of California or weaken drilling safety regulations.
Schiff believes the best way to keep energy prices low and decrease our reliance on foreign countries for fuel is to invest in alternative energy and fuel efficiency technologies. By marshalling America’s great strengths—our innovativeness, our technological prowess, and our entrepreneurial spirit—to develop clean energy technologies, Schiff believes that we can better secure our nation, protect the environment, and become the world leader in a cutting-edge industry.
Restoring the Los Angeles River
Restoring the Los Angeles River has long been one of Rep. Adam Schiff’s priorities, and he has worked extensively with the City of Los Angeles and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on a plan to revitalize the Los Angeles River. In 2014, after years of evaluation and planning, the City of Los Angeles and the Army Corps decided to move forward with an ambitious restoration plan for the Los Angeles River and to split the costs of the project. Last year, the City and the Corps formally agreed to begin the project, starting with preconstruction engineering and design and followed by construction.
This ambitious project will restore more than 700 acres of open space along a broad stretch of the Los Angeles River stretching from Griffith Park to downtown Los Angeles and allow for a continuous, functioning ecosystem along the river corridor that could support birds, mammals and fish. New trails and overlooks will provide public access, along with bicycle and pedestrian connections to green space where families and communities can congregate.
Schiff will continue to urge the House Appropriations Committee to provide robust funding for the Army Corps to ensure that the Los Angeles River project has the opportunity to receive the federal support it needs.
Protecting Wilderness Lands and Preserving Endangered Wildlife
Rep. Schiff believes that wilderness lands, including the Southern California foothills, are treasures that we must continually work to preserve for our children and our children’s children to enjoy. To that end, he has supported many efforts to preserve wilderness lands across the country. In Southern California, specifically, Schiff introduced and passed the landmark Rim of the Valley Corridor Study Act, legislation that commissioned a study on the feasibility of expanding the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area to include the mountains and canyons in the Rim of the Valley Corridor. The Corridor consists of parts of the Santa Monica Mountains, Santa Susanna Mountains, San Gabriel Mountains, Verdugo Mountains, San Rafael Hills, and adjacent connector areas to the Los Padres and San Bernardino National Forests—in essence many of the hills and mountains surrounding Burbank, Glendale, and other communities in our area.
The National Park Service began their study in 2010 and transmitted its final report to Congress in February of 2016. Over the following years, Rep. Schiff held numerous townhalls and conducted extensive outreach and drafted the Rim of the Valley Corridor Preservation Act. The bill would expand the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area by approximately 191,000 acres and enables the National Park Service and local communities to better protect natural resources and habitats. A map of the proposed expansion can be found here, and to view the fact sheet about the legislation, click here. In April 2019, the Natural Resources Committee held a hearing on the legislation. Rep. Schiff intends to move this bill through the legislative process in order to preserve green space in the Los Angeles region.
Building Out a Full West Coast Earthquake Early Warning System
Rep. Schiff believes that it is critical the U.S. maintains its vigilance and expertise in earthquake research. Over the years, he has become a leader on this issue and a strong supporter of the Earthquake Early Warning System that has been in development by the U.S. Geological Survey, Caltech, UC Berkeley, and other west coast universities. Such an early warning system would be enormously helpful in providing residents and first responders with advanced notice that could help avert major infrastructure damage by shutting down mechanical systems like mass transit and elevators, as well as reducing injuries and saving lives in the event of a major earthquake.
Since 2012, Schiff has been leading his colleagues in Congress in urging both the Office of Management and Budget and his fellow Appropriations Committee members to support funding for the Earthquake Hazards Program, and specifically, the Earthquake Early Warning system. Schiff first secured $5 million in funding for the system in FY15. Since then, Congress has continually increased funding including $8.2 million for FY16, $10.2 million for FY17, $12.9 million for FY18, and $16.1 million for FY19. Most recently, Schiff led a letter to the Appropriations Committee in April 2019 with 47 House members asking for $18.6 million for the continued rollout and maintenance of the West Coast Earthquake Early Warning System. Rep. Schiff continues to push for continued strong funding to build out this system to protect infrastructure and those living and doing business on the West Coast from preventable injuries and damage when the next large quake hits.