Energy and the Environment

Summary of Position

Congressman DeSaulnier recognizes climate change for the existential threat that it is and, beginning with his time as a member of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD), he has been a proud champion of policies that promote sustainability, protect the environment, and mitigate the harmful effects of climate change. He is a firm believer that the challenges of climate change also present enormous opportunity and strong, forward-looking energy and environmental policy will be a key driver of growth, innovation, and competitiveness. While fueling economic growth, rigorous environmental protections will protect the health of all Californians.

By the Numbers

  • Practically 100% of the global warming witnessed over the past 150 years can be attributed to human activity.

  • If we do not cut carbon emissions in the next 30 years, rising sea levels, more extreme weather, and water and crop scarcity may cause as many as 143 million people to be displaced.

  • California had more than 512,000 jobs in clean energy in 2018, with Contra Costa in the state’s top ten counties for clean energy jobs. In fact, 54% of all energy sector jobs in California are clean energy industries.

  • The number of zero-emission vehicles in California rose 30% from October 2017 to October 2018 and 33.4% between October 2018 and October 2019.

  • Rolling back current fuel economy standards, as the Trump Administration did, will cost the United States $450 billion by 2050.

Things to Know

  • Member of the Sustainable Energy and Environment Coalition and the Safe Climate Caucus

  • Earned a 100% on the League of Conservation Voters 2019 Scorecard

  • Led a coalition of 81 Democratic Members in introducing a resolution (H.Con.Res 65) to condemn the Trump Administration’s rollback of fuel economy standards and of California’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act

  • Crafted policies to assist with the implementation of the California Global Warming Solutions Act, the first program in the country to take a comprehensive approach to addressing climate change, as a California State Legislator

Working for You

Supporting Workers Transitioning Out of the Fossil Fuel Industry
Congressman DeSaulnier authored an effort that was included in the Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act (H.R. 4447) to bring community leaders, industry, environmental groups, and the workforce together to provide fossil fuel workers with meaningful support to ensure they are not left behind when the economy transitions away from fossil fuels. A grant like this would help Contra Costa better prepare for the impacts to the local workforce and economy from refinery closures.
Fighting Against the Climate Crisis
Three bills authored by Congressman DeSaulnier were included as part of the House Select Committee’s Climate Crisis Action Plan. Those bills support environmentally friendly vehicles and technology, promote innovation in America’s transportation systems, and improve transportation planning and decision making. The Climate Crisis Action Plan would put the country on a path to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, if not earlier; power economic recovery through clean energy investment and family-sustaining jobs; and address the legacy of environmental injustice harming America’s low-income communities and communities of color.
Ensuring Protection of the Contra Costa Canal
Congressman DeSaulnier introduced the Contra Costa Canal Transfer Act which transfers the title of the Contra Costa Canal from the Federal Bureau of Reclamation to the Contra Costa Water District (CCWD), allowing the CCWD to invest in safety and environmental improvements to the canal’s infrastructure. The legislation was signed into law as part of a bipartisan public lands and conservation package.
Expanding the John Muir National Historic Site
To improve access to parks and their scenic trails, Congressman DeSaulnier  introduced the John Muir National Historic Site Expansion Act (H.R. 1289)—a bill that will allow the Martinez, California Park to add 44 acres of donated land to improve park access and preserve this land for generations to come.
Creating a Sustainable Federal Fleet of Vehicles
In 2018, the federal fleet inventory totaled 644,545 vehicles. Congressman DeSaulnier saw the federal fleet as an opportunity to fight climate change and protect public health, so he authored the Clean Federal Fleet Act (H.R. 5554), legislation that requires any vehicles purchased by the federal government to comply with the Obama-era low GHG emissions standards. Congressman DeSaulnier knows that now, more than ever, is the time to keep fighting for cleaner, more sustainable vehicles and to protect public health.

For a downloadable copy of Mark's energy and environment work, click the image below: