Climate Bill Generates Testimony At Frederick County Council Public Hearing

Elected officials were asked to support the bill during the 2020 Md. General Assembly.

Frederick, Md (KM). There was a lot of support expressed on Tuesday during a Frederick County Council hearing for the Climate Solutions Now bill. The legislation will, among other things, require Maryland to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by 60% of the 2006 levels by 2030, and require net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2045.

“Climate is a global, urgent issue and it requires immediate action at the state, local and national level,” said Paul Walker of Middletown, who testified on Tuesday.

Another supporter is Keven Selner, the co-chair of the Climate Emergency Mobilization Work Group. “There is a very aggressive greenhouse gas emission reductions that are proposed,” he said. “Those are extremely important to public health benefits as documented by Dr. {Barbara} Brookmyer from the County Health Department.”

The bill was introduced during the 2021 Maryland General Assembly. Sections of the legislation were enacted as parts of other bills, but other issues still need to be resolved, according background materials on the legislation.

Other parts of the legislation would require the Maryland Department of Labor to adopt new energy conservation standards for buildings; establish tree-planting goals; increase and extend energy efficiency and conservation program requirements by the Public Service Commission; and the  establishment of requirements for the state to purchase zero-emissions vehicles for its fleet.

Linda Norris-Waldt, the Executive Director of Envision Frederick County, also testified in support of the measure. “As part of the larger state of Maryland, we urge you to support the Climate Solutions Now Act by requesting its reintroduction and passage in the 2022 General Assembly Session,” she said.

The Council is expected next Tuesday  to vote on whether to include its support of this bill in its 2022 Legislative Package.

By Kevin McManus