Guest Author - April Horton
Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama has been hard at work as a junior senator trying to protect our children and help reduce our impact on the earth. If he wins the election we may be in store for one of the "greenest" presidents in history. He has fought oil drilling in Alaska's Wildlife refuge as well as confronting other important issues of our time such as suspending ethanol subsidy's as well as sponsoring bills for lead paint abatement and a health impact bill on environmental health.
Obama has been an environmental activist since his college days and it has defined his views and helped in his path towards his presidential nomination. He has cosponsored many environmentally sustainable minded ideas, bills and acts. The League of Conservation Voters has given him a lifetime environmental score of 86% which is quite high. He is committed to working toward a socially conscious economy and sustainable environmental policies.
Some of the important issues he has encountered, supported, sponsored and promoted are;
Supported The Climate Stewardship & Innovation Act.
Introduced the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee in the 109th Congress.
Working towards the reduction of the emission of greenhouse gases. This includes stricter regulations on smokestacks as well as car emissions. He is a cosponsor of the Global Warming Pollution Reduction Act and has vowed to reduce emissions by 80% by 2050.
Introduced the Healthy Communities Act and Healthy Places Act. These two acts help keep you and your communities safe from environmental risks such as lead, asbestos and other damaging and harmful pollutants.
Obama has worked hard to help clean up lead toxicity and has supported and pushed the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) to publish standardized rules pertaining to the removal and treatment of lead pain among contractors during renovation projects. This was especially helpful in cleaning up a Chicago housing project in 1985 before he was even done with graduate school.
Cosponsored Coal to Liquid Fuel Promotion Act
Obama supports the phasing out of incandescent light bulbs by 2014.
Introduce Health Care to Hybrids Act. This act helps cover costs to those former automotive workers who are facing health problems as they age. In exchange domestic car makers would agree to devote and invest 50% of their savings to help develop more fuel efficient cars in the United States. Thus cutting our oil consumption.
He has called for a reduction of oil consumption within the United States by 35% by 2030.
Helped sponsor the Health Impact Bill of 2006 for Environmental Health. This bill would have helped protect communities from health risks posed by environmental impact. Especially among the poorer communities. Unfortunately this bill never came to vote
Helped cosponsor the commission to examine Katrina response. He also opposed rebuilding New Orleans by outsourcing work to Halliburton and instead promoted localized efforts.
Supports the Protection of our Great Lakes and National Forests. In turn this is helping to preserve these natural wonders for future generations and protecting millions of peoples drinking water supply.
Obama is committed to reducing nuclear storage by reducing the production of nuclear power.
He plans to help regulate animal feeding to reduce pollution. This would support local farmers, promote organic farming practices and help landowners with conservation efforts.
Overall Barack Obama's environmental workings are impressive to a lot of environmentalists. Though not perfect, he is working hard to help our planet and our communities stay healthy and promote sustainability.