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PRI's Environmental News Magazine

Klobuchar Goes Green

Air Date: Week of

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Amy Klobuchar is a U.S. Senator from Minnesota running as a Democrat in the 2020 Presidential Elections. (Photo: U.S. Senate, Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain)

Minnesota Democratic Senator and Presidential hopeful Amy Klobuchar is campaigning for action on climate change. At a recent “youth-focused” CNN Town Hall, Senator Klobuchar explained she can engage rural America as climate change is taking a huge toll on the middle of the country as well as the coasts, and why she supports the Green New Deal.

Transcript

CURWOOD: From PRI and the Jennifer and Ted Stanley Studios at the University of Massachusetts Boston, this is Living on Earth. I’m Steve Curwood.

With the race for the Democratic presidential nomination already well underway, we’re keeping a close eye on what’s being said about climate change. On April 22nd, Earth Day, Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar spoke at a “youth-focused” CNN Town Hall. It was organized by the Institute of Politics, the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, and the New Hampshire Institute of Politics. And sure enough, one of the 500 young voters in the audience at St. Anselm College in New Hampshire asked her about climate change. Senator Klobuchar supports the Green New Deal, and one student wanted to know how she was going to get buy-in for the Green New Deal from rural voters.

KLOBUCHAR: I think what's important, as you look at the goals in the Green New Deal -- and no one thinks we're going to dot every i and cross every t in a short period of time -- but we need those goals. We need as a nation to come behind goals, we need the energy of young people and people that really want to move on climate change. So this is what I say to my rural voters, I say, look at what's in front of you. Because for too long, we've been talking about it, I think, of more of a coastal issue -- which is true, rising sea levels; you just saw the Greenland ice sheet again was in the news today; hurricanes. But let's talk about it from the middle of the country where we need the political support. And I personally think someone from the heartland could do a pretty good job of that. What do we see in front of us? This is what we see: floods all over Iowa, Nebraska, and Missouri. This woman in Iowa, Fran, is literally standing with me with binoculars on, looking at her house which is submerged under water. And she says to me, this is where I live with my husband, and my two four year olds. And I said, well, is the river right there? Because it was looking... she says "no, the river's two and a half miles away. Ours is a house that's over a century old. There's still horsehair in the plaster. But this time for the first time, the water came in to my house." That's climate change.

Or you look at the wildfires in Colorado, or Arizona, or you think of that dad in Northern California, outside of Paradise, who's driving his little girl in the car with their house presumably burning behind them, and the flames are lapping over their car. And he's singing to her, singing to her, to calm her down. Climate change isn't happening 100 years from now. It's happening right now. And that's why as your President, on day one, I would get us back into the international climate change agreement.

[APPLAUSE]

All right? That's day one.

[CHEERS]

On day two -- on day two, and day three, I would bring back the Clean Power rules that the Obama administration worked out, that will make a big dent in it. [APPLAUSE] I would bring back, I would bring back the gas mileage standards that they just left and said, Oh, sorry, I know you car companies were ready to do it, but guess what you don't have to. That's what they did. And I would propose sweeping legislation for green buildings and new ideas. And we need to do this because guess what, it's you guys, not me. It's my daughter and you guys that are going to be inheriting this earth and that's why we need you on the front line. All right?

[APPLAUSE]

CURWOOD: Minnesota Democratic Senator Amy Klobuchar, speaking at a CNN Town Hall on April 22nd, 2019.

 

Links

CNN Politics | “Takeaways from Amy Klobuchar’s CNN Town Hall”

Amy Klobuchar’s Official Website

United States Senator Amy Klobuchar | “Environment, Climate Change, Homegrown Energy and Natural Resources”

 

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