Environmental and Clean Energy Groups Praise Key Subcommittee for Advancing the Virginia Clean Economy Act

Advocates Thank Legislators for taking Bold Climate Action

RICHMOND – Following an important subcommittee hearing, environmental and clean energy groups joined in praising members of the House of Delegates for taking bold and meaningful action to address climate change and transform Virginia’s energy economy. Last night, Delegate Rip Sullivan’s Subcommittee of the House Labor & Commerce Committee met and voted to advance the Virginia Clean Economy Act (VCEA).

Introduced in December with the backing of a broad coalition of groups from around Virginia, the VCEA, of which Del. Sullivan is a chief co-patron, would address climate change in the Commonwealth by requiring that 100% of our power come from clean sources and eliminating utility pollution by 2050. The VCEA would accomplish this making major investments in energy efficiency and ensuring that the transition to a 100% clean energy economy doesn’t hurt ratepayers.

Last night’s vote represents one of the first steps along the path to enactment for the VCEA, and a broad coalition of stakeholders is still at the table ensuring strong consensus behind this bold strategy to address climate change.

“With this vote, Virginia moves one step closer to historic climate action,” said Harrison Wallace, Virginia Director of CCAN Action Fund. “This would have been unthinkable just one year ago. Voters across the Commonwealth demanded serious climate legislation and these members are delivering on that call today.”

“Now is the time for the General Assembly to take bold action on climate change,” said Mary Rafferty, Executive Director of the Virginia Conservation Network. “The Virginia Clean Economy Act sends a clear message: Virginians want the Commonwealth to make climate action a reality; we’re relying on the House Labor & Commerce committee members to hear this call.”

“Virginians are tired of inaction when it comes to addressing the climate crisis – they want results and it’s time for the legislature to deliver,” said Michael Town, executive director of the Virginia League of Conservation Voters. “We look forward to moving the Virginia Clean Economy Act forward and putting the Commonwealth on track to 100 percent clean energy and cleaner air for all Virginians.”

“We are heartened by the work being done by our coalition partners and members of the General Assembly to bolster the Virginia Clean Economy Act in the last several days,” said Advanced Energy Economy Virginia Executive Director Harry Godfrey. “Moving forward, AEE is excited to work with the legislature to make sure Virginia’s energy future is free of carbon emissions while strengthening the economy, protecting consumers and fighting the climate crisis right here at home.”

For information: Denise Robbins, CCAN Action Fund, denise@chesapeakeclimate.org, 240-630-1889