April 23, 2015
SAINT PAUL, MN – Is climate change real and caused by humans? 97.5 percent of climate scientists say yes, but 99 percent of Minnesota’s House Republicans say no.
Yesterday, on Earth Day, Rep. Melissa Hortman (DFL – Brooklyn Park) brought forward an amendment during debate on the House Jobs and Energy omnibus bill that asked the Minnesota legislature to acknowledge climate change is real and is caused by human activity. 71 of 72 House Republicans voted no, defeating the amendment.
“It’s embarrassing for Minnesota that the House Republican majority is on the record as climate change deniers,” said Hortman. “Climate change is real. It’s happening here in Minnesota. And it will have a profound impact on our state’s future if we ignore it.”
Along with rejecting this amendment, Republicans universally supported the bill, which reverses decades of progress on clean and renewable energy creation. The bill guts Minnesota’s renewable energy standard and eliminates Minnesota's solar standard - paving the way for more natural gas power plants to supply Minnesota with electricity. It also changes net metering rules which encourage homeowners to invest in solar and wind energy.
“Minnesota is a nation leader in renewable energy. We should be taking the next step forward but House Republicans are taking a giant step backward,” said Hortman. “They are discouraging energy conservation and efficiency while helping the fossil fuel industry pad their profits. I guess that’s the kind of policy we should expect from a party that denies the overwhelming scientific evidence that climate change is a real issue our state must confront.”