Our natural resources are a foundation of our prosperity and well-being for us and for future generations. At the same time, the demand for energy is greater than ever and we have to be smart about how we choose to meet this demand. As your Representative in Congress I will partner with state governments and the private sector to move us toward energy independence. I will work to preserve our natural resources, with the goal of creating long-term jobs for our citizens.
Promoting Energy Independence: The more energy we create here at home, the less dependent we are on other countries. Moving forward, this will be a key factor in maintaining our national security. Our continuing dependence on fossil fuels, even from domestic sources, is short-sighted. Our policies must tip the economic scale in favor of renewable energy. Currently, Virginia has just a few wind power facilities and small solar farms, while other states are already reaping benefits from renewable energy. Kansas, Oklahoma, and Iowa generate 25% to over 35% of their energy from wind.
Creating Jobs: Renewable energy is the fastest growing sector of the energy market, and major economies around the world are moving in this direction. With wise and informed leadership, the United States can and will be on the leading edge of the industries that are converting to smarter ways of producing power. We will need a large workforce to assertively make this transition. Nearby states like North Carolina and Pennsylvania produce only a small fraction of their energy from wind, but already employ several thousand people in the wind industry. We know that investing in green energy will create tens of thousands jobs in Virginia over the next decade. That’s good for the economy and the environment.
Opposing Expansion of Fossil Fuel Production: Our continuing dependence on fossil fuels as a primary source of our energy is not forward-looking, and we should not be planning to build additional natural gas pipelines. Apart from the disruption they would cause to waterways, sensitive natural areas, and private property, the proposed Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley pipelines would only benefit a small number of companies and are estimated to create very few permanent jobs.
Protecting the Environment: I want to move the United States to the forefront of the global effort to reduce the causes of rising sea levels and temperatures. We must work to preserve our agricultural land and heritage, maintain healthy forests, safeguard our coastlines, and help farmers and foresters adapt to these environmental changes. One of the best ways to do this is to restore the integrity of the Environmental Protection Agency by maintaining funding for its efforts to protect our air, land, and water quality and safeguard public health.