Minnesota House DFL proposes spending $1B of surplus on climate plan

January 20, 2022

Duluth News Tribune

Alex Derosier

ST. PAUL — Minnesota House Democrats are proposing the state use $1 billion of its projected, record-breaking $7.7 billion budget surplus for a wide range of legislation aimed at curbing the effects of human-caused climate change.

At a news conference Wednesday, Jan. 19, the House Climate Action Caucus previewed its proposals for the 2022 session, which include hundreds of millions of investment in renewable energy, clean transportation and weatherization for homes. The caucus also says the proposal will create jobs, particularly through its home energy efficiency programs.

The Democratic-Farmer-Labor-backed climate proposal is made up of about individual 30 bills that will move through the Legislature. However, with a Republican-controlled Senate, it’s likely many of the bills will face an uphill battle.

Caucus Chair Patty Acomb, DFL-Minnetonka, said 2021 was yet another year of extreme weather events offering a preview of the climate in years to come unless lawmakers take bold action on the environment.

“In the last year in Minnesota, we have seen our changing climate play out in severe droughts that impacted our entire state, a record heat wave (and) the summer of smoke that came from wildfires,” she told reporters. “We witnessed tornadoes in December that have never happened in our state before.”

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Author: Hannah Hoeger

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