USGBC Louisiana Asks Senate Candidates About Environmental and Building Issues
Thursday, December 1, 2016
Posted by: Shannon Stage
Election Day in Louisiana is December 10, 2016. In an effort to inform and educate, the chapter sent both U.S. Senate candidates questions about environmental and building issues most common to our membership. The chapter has not and will not endorse either candidate.
Mr. Foster's response are below. Mr. Kennedy has not responded. Any responses received will be published.
1. The federal government provides an array of tax incentives and subsidies for various energy sources including oil and gas, solar photovoltaic, wind power, biofuels, and energy efficient vehicles and buildings. Do you support treating all energy sources equally--either ending all tax subsidies or providing equal tax treatment of all sources?
Mr. Campbell: As I said to the Sierra Club on my way to earning its endorsement in this race, I support ending all government subsidies for energy production, across the board. Let the market work.
2. The federal Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA 2007) extended existing federal energy reduction goals and required new federal buildings to be built 30% below ASHRAE standards or the International Energy Conservation Code (IECC). Do you support continuing these efforts to save the taxpayers money?
Mr. Campbell: I am a believer in energy efficiency. I built my home in south Bossier Parish in the 1980s using passive-solar design and extra insulation against the weather. At the Public Service Commission I fought hard – against strong opposition -- to offer incentives to Louisiana ratepayers to install efficiency features in their homes and businesses. I believe in saving taxpayer dollars and will, when elected to the U.S. Senate, support laws promoting high standards for energy consumption in federal buildings.
3. In August 2016, a 1-in-1,000 year storm event dumped 7.1 trillion gallons of water on 20 parishes in southern Louisiana, flooding an estimated 146,000 homes, displacing 265,000 children from their schools, and taking at least 13 lives. What actions will you advocate for in Congress to help protect Louisiana families and businesses from future natural disasters?
Mr. Campbell: I believe in rebuilding our coastal wetlands to provide a barrier against damage to South Louisiana from hurricanes and storms. Toward that end I will advocate for coastal preservation funds in Congress to fully fund the state’s Master Plan for Coastal Restoration; ensure that federal funds allocated for restoration are used for that purpose; hold oil and gas companies accountable for stewardship of the coastal areas they use; work with Congressional colleagues to achieve nationwide buy-in for our coastal restoration; collaborate with our Coastal Authority to improve practices and standards; advance science-based policies that produce the best strategies to prevent land loss and bring about restoration; balance the needs of our businesses and integrity of our land by pushing green technology; and use coastal funding to develop good jobs.
4. Do you believe human activity contributes to climate change?
Mr. Campbell: I was the only candidate in this race to publicly state my belief that human activity contributes to climate change. I agree with the strong consensus of the world’s scientific community. As the LSU researchers stated recently, Louisiana has more to lose from climate change than any other state in the Lower 48.
5. Do you have additional campaign resources, relevant endorsements, or information you would
like to share?
Mr. Campbell: I have been endorsed in this race by the national and Louisiana Sierra Club and 22 of Louisiana’s most prominent environmental and conservation leaders (see attached). I also have the support of the Louisiana AFL-CIO, which demonstrates that support for a clean environment need not conflict with jobs and a strong economy. Indeed, I believe one goes with the other. Finally, I am proud to call Governor John Bel Edwards a supporter. He knows my record as a fighter for people and as an independent voice means I will be his partner in restoring hope in our great state. Read more from Mr. Campbell.