The facts are clear and the evidence incontrovertible: our earth is getting warmer, ice caps and glaciers are melting, the sea level is rising, and an array of other related events are underway from storm surges to droughts. I strongly believe that human-induced climate change is an urgent threat that must be tackled immediately, and as governor I will rebuild the political conversation on climate change and what we must do to prepare for a new future.

I applaud the steps that Connecticut has already taken to transition to a sustainable energy future and counter the adverse effects of climate change. Our state has committed to the Paris Agreement even as the Trump administration has pulled out, and Connecticut along with 175 other governments has pledged to reduce emissions by 80 percent by 2050.

However, I know that we can and must do more, which is why I will commit Connecticut to a further reduction in carbon emissions from current levels of 35 percent by 2030, 70 percent by 2040, and carbon neutral by 2050. These targets are tougher than required under the Paris Agreement but are achievable, measurable goals that will guide our state’s energy and environmental policy.

Further, our transition to a sustainable energy future will create thousands of new jobs in the green economy – not destroy jobs as the Trump administration alleges. We know this because across our country the states with the least carbon-intensive economies, like Washington state and Massachusetts, have had some of the highest economic growth rates. We have already seen good-paying jobs created in the fuel cell, solar installation, and home weatherization industries, and I am proud that New London will become a new manufacturing and assembling base for offshore wind turbines. As the sustainable energy transition continues, I believe our state’s growth in jobs in fuel cells, solar power, and resiliency construction will pave the way for even greater growth in this area. I will make sure that many more green jobs are created. This will require bringing multiple stakeholders to the table, including industry, labor, and our fine academic institutions, and promoting innovative solutions such as the state’s recent long-term contracting in order to promote the the offshore wind project out of New London.

I have spoken to many families throughout this campaign and have heard so much about how difficult it is for families to afford their energy needs, particularly during the winter. I will work diligently to bring energy costs down through a variety of steps, including investments in energy efficiency, peak shaving, more competitive bidding, and smart metering. I am a strong proponent of shifting homes away from home heating oil to much cleaner alternatives like natural gas, even better such advanced technologies efficient electric heat pumps and thermal loops. And as more renewable energy comes online in our state, we will reduce our dependence on the spot-price of natural gas which so often drives up our cost of electricity.

Lastly, I pledge to seek out and be sure that science, facts, and transparency are inherent in our decision-making. I will have the state work in closer partnership with all our cities and towns to ensure sea-level rise and resiliency are more deeply imbedded in our planning and zoning processes. I myself will be, and will have all state agencies remain, open to new ideas, and be more receptive to how best to conceptualize and implement new policies and regulations with respect to climate change.

I will never support a budget that diverts money from our Energy Efficiency Fund, the Green Bank, and other dedicated funding sources. These programs are funded by ratepayers and make important investments in energy efficiency, conservation, and the development of new renewable energy markets. It is simply short-sighted to shortchange these programs since they are crucial to our state’s response to climate change, and to our development of a renewable energy platform essential for the energy independence of our citizens.

In order to continue Connecticut’s transition toward sustainable energy sources, to increase employment in the green economy, and to lower energy costs, I will:

Connecticut Values

Ned is running for Governor because we need to change Connecticut’s direction before we fall too far behind. 

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