Cassie Kelly, Digital Organizer, June 4, 2018
Columbus, OH — Leaders in Ohio’s environmental movement have released Project 2022: An Environmental Agenda for the Next Governor of Ohio. The non-partisan agenda outlines a 100 day, 1 year, and 1 term plan for protecting the environment and the economy for the next Governor of Ohio. Each recommendation is scientifically sound, politically viable, economically feasible and can be accomplished within the first term of the next administration.
The Alliance for the Great Lakes, American Rivers (water), Buckeye Trail Association, Clean Fuels Ohio (transportation), Environmental Law and Policy Center, Greater Ohio Policy Center (land and transportation), Green Energy Ohio (energy, air, and transportation), Junction Coalition, Ohio Citizen Action, The Ohio Environmental Council, Solar United Neighbors, Tecumseh Land Trust (land), and Western Reserve Land Conservancy have come together to identify the most pressing problems facing our environment and have found solutions that the next Governor can enact.
The six main topics of Project 2022 are land conservation, energy and air quality, oil and gas extraction and transmission, water, transportation, and environmental justice. The next Governor should direct agencies to work with the public, take administrative action, and collaborate with the state legislature to make progress on environmental priorities that protect our communities and natural resources and spur a healthy economy.
The next Governor should relaunch Ohio as a renewable energy leader by halting attacks on existing clean energy standards, and enabling policies to accelerate innovations electric consumers are implementing such as on-site renewable energy projects. The next Governor should transform the power sector, ease overly-burdensome regulations on wind energy, and invest in a decarbonized electric grid by working with agencies like the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio (PUCO) and the Ohio Power Siting Board (OPSB).
The next Administration should also strengthen safeguards for public health, clean water, and clean air by updating oil and gas regulations; and increase the trend toward emissions-free transportation to reduce our carbon footprint and protect our air quality by putting in place incentives for clean fleets and increasing funding to local transit authorities.
Ohioans have a right to clean, safe, affordable drinking water, but toxic algal blooms, invasive species and unregulated chemicals put our water at risk.The partners recommend that the new Governor tackle these issues head on by developing standards for unregulated chemicals, increasing funding for water infrastructure and system upgrades, and reducing toxic algae through funding and certified nutrient management plans.
To achieve true economic viability and social well-being, Ohio must address the discriminatory public health and environmental effects of state laws and policies. The next Governor must ensure a just transition for fossil fuel workers into the clean-energy era by offering financial support and support communities dealing with pollution. Ohio must also operate on a budget that supports environmental protection and develop infrastructure to help communities participate every step of the way.