Reps. Casten, Underwood, Newman Host National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy for Midwest Climate Innovation Tour and Press Conference Following Alarming IPCC Report
Downers Grove, Illinois — U.S. Congressman Sean Casten (IL-06), Congresswoman Lauren Underwood (IL-14), and Congresswoman Marie Newman (IL-03) hosted White House Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy for a Midwest Climate Innovation Tour. McCarthy’s visit highlighted the economic impact of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and Build Back Better Agenda on the Midwest and the importance of climate and clean energy in the Midwest, especially when it comes to job creation, public health, and economic opportunity. Following the alarming report released by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Congress has a responsibility to include climate action bold enough to do what is scientifically necessary in any reconciliation package.
“Monday’s IPCC report made clear that while our planet will continue to warm and the climate crisis is undoubtedly caused by human activity, we still have an opportunity to turn this ship around and save our species,” said Rep. Sean Casten. “During my Midwest Climate Innovation Tour, White House National Climate Advisor McCarthy and I saw first hand at Argonne National Laboratory and Fermilab that we have the tools and the resources to do what’s scientifically necessary. We have a chance to have a real impact in this fight against the climate crisis, and it starts with passing the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and Build Back Better Agenda. That means any reconciliation package must prioritize climate at the scale that science demands to prevent economic catastrophe. We cannot afford to accept anything less.”
“It was an honor to travel to Illinois and visit national labs in the heartland that are at the forefront of innovation that will help drive our clean energy future forward,” said National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy. “With President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal passing the Senate today, it was an incredible opportunity to highlight how we are going to deliver for the American communities across the country while tackling climate change, create good-paying, union jobs, and build a better future for our children.”
"It's such an honor to have National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy with us in the 14th District today for a tour of Fermilab, one of the crown jewels of our community here in northern Illinois. In this moment, we face a historic crisis of climate change, but with this crisis, we have the opportunity to create millions of good American jobs that will improve the health of our planet, solidify Illinois's role as a global leader in clean energy, aid cutting-edge scientific research, and help in the fight against climate change to preserve our natural treasures for the generations to come," said Rep. Lauren Underwood. "With the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and Build Back Better Agenda, we can achieve this and take meaningful and long-term action to fight the climate crisis."
“For decades, Illinois has been at the forefront of innovation when it comes to clean energy, green infrastructure and climate action,” said Rep. Marie Newman. “That's why I was honored to welcome White House National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy today to IL-03's very own Argonne National Laboratory so she could see first-hand how some of our state's brightest scientists, researchers and engineers are leading our nation's response to this global climate crisis," said Congresswoman Newman. "If we want to ensure our children and grandchildren inherit a habitable planet, we need to start investing in our future. That means supporting institutions like Argonne and passing President Biden's Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and Build Back Better Agenda, so we can not only decarbonize the U.S. economy but also protect our front line communities from future disasters and create new high-quality and sustainable green union jobs in the process."
Rep. Casten, National Climate Advisor McCarthy, and Rep. Marie Newman began the day touring Argonne National Laboratory, where they saw the advanced computing labs researching the impact of climate change as well as energy storage and battery research facilities.
The tour then proceeded to North Central College, where Rep. Casten and National Climate Advisor McCarthy were joined by local leaders and experts for a roundtable discussion on the impact of climate change on Illinois and the economic opportunity presented by climate action. Participants included beloved local meteorologist Tom Skilling, 98-year-old former Manhattan Project Scientist Dieter Gruen, climate activists, clean energy entrepreneurs, science teachers, and others. The roundtables highlighted the urgent need for climate action bold enough to do what the science demands and the job creation opportunities it presents.
The tour concluded at Fermilab, where Rep. Casten, National Climate Advisor McCarthy, and Rep. Lauren Underwood toured labs for both the National Quantum Initiative Accelerator Program and the Muon g-2 Experiment. They also held a brief discussion on infrastructure upgrades that would allow for substantial energy savings.
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