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Protecting the Environment

"Climate change is real and has serious consequences for our economy, our livelihoods, and our health.  You don't have to go any further than communities across Vermont to hear about its early impacts. Just ask the businesses and families wiped out by Tropical Storm Irene. Ask ski lift operators worried about losing their jobs as the season shortens. Or ask sugar makers who are coping with uncertainty over when the season will start and how long it will last.  This is a problem that can be solved. If we ignore the costs of carbon pollution, we will lose to other countries America’s advantage in developing the clean energy technologies of the future."

 

Spotlight on the Environment

Rep. Welch is a leader in the House on initiatives to tackle climate change and protect our environment. As a member of the Safe Climate Caucus and House Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition, he has taken on climate change skeptics and helped defeat efforts to handcuff the Environmental Protection Agency and gut landmark environmental laws and initiatives such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Land and Water Conservation Fund.  He is the House leader on energy efficiency, a vocal opponent of the Keystone XL tar sands oil pipeline, and a strong supporter of a cap and trade system to check carbon emissions.     

More on Protecting the Environment

January 26, 2017 In The News

On a visit to GE Aviation’s local plant Thursday, Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., hailed the company as one that has accepted the realities of climate change and is pursuing measures to reduce energy use and carbon emissions.
Welch contrasted the company’s efforts in recent years with the ongoing debate in Washington over whether climate change is real.

“You don’t have to waste time debating whether the problem exists,” Welch said, adding that many large corporations have seen the tangible benefits of reducing their carbon footprint.

December 14, 2016 Press Release

BURLINGTON, Vt.  – With leaders of Vermont’s environmental community at his side, Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) renewed his commitment to reform the federal ethanol mandate in the new Congress that convenes in early January.  Joining Welch were representatives of the Sierra Club, National Wildlife Federation (NWF), Lake Champlain International, and Vermont Natural Resources Council.  Speakers highlighted the harm to the environment resulting from a federal corn-based ethanol mandate. 

December 13, 2016 In The News

By Mike Polhamus

Vermont’s lone member of the U.S. House said Tuesday he intends to fight any efforts to expand a massive nationwide subsidy to corn farmers instituted during the George W. Bush administration.

The subsidy, which requires that gasoline contain a certain percentage of ethanol made from corn, hurts Vermont farmers by making corn for livestock scarce and therefore expensive, said Democratic Rep. Peter Welch at a press event in Burlington.

November 17, 2016 Press Release

WASHINGTON –Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) today sent a bipartisan letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) urging the review for potential regulation of three chemical clusters that disproportionately affect first responders and emergency personnel.  EPA’s review of potentially toxic chemicals was directed by Congress in recently enacted toxic chemical safety legislation.

September 27, 2016 In The News
As the federal government works to come up with new rules for decommissioning nuclear plants like Vermont Yankee, U.S. Rep. Peter Welch can distill his hopes into two words. “We’re trying to say over and over again: ‘community involvement, community involvement, community involvement,’” said Welch, D-Vt.
May 5, 2016 Press Release
Rep. Peter Welch (D-VT) has introduced legislation that would establish criminal penalties under the Clean Air Act for automakers who install “defeat devices” in vehicles to bypass emissions regulations.
April 28, 2016 In The News
The Town of Williamstown held a double celebration Last Friday at the Public Service Building. The first reason for the celebration was to celebrate Earth Day and the second reason was to formally announce the large grant and low interest loan to upgrade the town’s 47 year-old wastewater system.
April 22, 2016 Press Release
As tests for perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) contaminating drinking water in North Bennington, Bennington and Pownal continue this week, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) pressed two congressional committees, charged with finalizing legislation to regulate toxic chemicals, for stricter federal rules and deference to strong state protections already in place in Vermont and across the country.
April 1, 2016 Press Release
Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Representative Peter Welch (D-Vt.) Friday joined 205 other current and former members of Congress in filing an amicus brief supporting the Clean Power Plan (CPP), which would protect public health and create jobs by setting the first-ever carbon pollution standards for power plants, the nation’s largest source of greenhouse gasses. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is considering a challenge to the Clean Power Plan in West Virginia et al. v. Environmental Protection Agency.
February 18, 2016 In The News

A Southern California congressman and two other representatives are calling for an investigation of Shell Oil over whether it deceived the public on climate change at the same time it was preparing its business operations for rising sea levels. 

In a Feb. 17 letter to U.S. Atty. Gen. Loretta Lynch, the three members of Congress said growing evidence suggests there may have been "a conspiracy between Shell, Exxon Mobil and potentially other companies in the fossil fuel industry."