Lawmakers Advance Climate Action Plan Focused on Disaster Prevention, Equity, and Workforce Development
(SACRAMENTO, CA) – To protect Californians and combat the escalating consequences of climate change, Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia (D-Coachella) and Speaker pro Tempore Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco) have introduced AB 1500, the Safe Drinking Water, Wildfire Prevention, Drought Preparation, Flood Protection, Extreme Heat Mitigation, and Workforce Development Bond Act of 2022.
“The passage of a climate resilience bond must be the next step in California’s climate leadership. A crisis of this magnitude requires urgent action and historic investments to protect our communities from the devastating public health, safety, and economic impacts of climate change,” said Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia, Chair of the Assembly Committee on Water, Parks, and Wildlife. “We can achieve our climate action goals as part of a robust economic strategy. By making serious, targeted investments now, California has the opportunity to mitigate climate impacts, improve disaster response, and prevent future catastrophes while uplifting underserved, environmentally vulnerable areas and creating new jobs where they are needed the most.”
“The impacts of climate change to our state and our communities require us to act quickly,” stated Assemblymember Kevin Mullin. “California needs to protect itself against future climate disasters and rebuild our workforce from an ongoing pandemic that has only inflicted additional pain and suffering. AB 1500 seeks to make California more climate resilient by investing $6.7B in various adaptation activities throughout the state, ranging from wildfire risk reduction, to drought preparation, to protection against sea-level rise. Not only will this measure help create new jobs for Californians, it will create long-term green jobs that help the state reach its climate goals. We must invest in the infrastructure necessary to protect our communities, our environment, and our economy from an evolving climate crisis. I am proud to be the joint author of this critical legislation."
California has already experienced severe consequences from climate change, from catastrophic wildfires, prolonged drought, extreme heat, severe flooding, sea-level rise, and the related adverse public health effects. The consequences of these climate events, disproportionately impact low-income, communities of color and come at an enormous economic cost. California’s Fourth Climate Change Assessment estimates that these costs will exceed $100 billion annually by mid-century.
Garcia and Mullin agree that historic investment is required now to protect our communities, economy, and natural resources. AB 1500 currently calls for a $6.7 billion investment in proven climate resilience strategies to prevent and respond to disasters prompted by the climate crisis. Additionally, this legislation seeks to correct deep-rooted inequities by prioritizing underserved, environmentally vulnerable areas and is intended to serve as a tool to build out green infrastructure, create jobs, and galvanize California’s workforce development.
The joint authors have already begun gathering support from a broad coalition of legislators and stakeholders to ensure the bond puts forward an equitable, comprehensive investment plan that reflects the diverse needs of communities across California.
Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia (D-Coachella) serves as the chairperson of the Assembly Committee on Water, Parks and Wildlife. He represents the 56th district, which comprises the cities and communities of Blythe, Brawley, Bermuda Dunes, Calexico, Calipatria, Cathedral City, Coachella, Desert Hot Springs, El Centro, Holtville, Imperial, Indio, Mecca, Oasis, North Shore, Salton Sea, Thermal, Thousand Palms, and Westmorland.
Speaker pro Tempore Kevin Mullin (D-South San Francisco) represents the 22nd district that includes the cities of Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, Foster City, Hillsborough, Millbrae, Pacifica, Redwood City, San Bruno, San Carlos, San Mateo, portions of South San Francisco and the San Mateo County Coastside communities of Montara and Moss Beach.