Massachusetts Democrats recognize that climate change is real and is already causing disruption and destruction to our property and our lives. The melting of polar ice caps, increased numbers and severity of storms, increased drought and flooding are all changes we cannot ignore. We understand that these changes are a direct result of human activity, primarily green house gas emissions from burning fossil fuels including coal, oil and natural gas. We understand that the resulting Climate Crisis requires prioritized attention and action on the scale equivalent to a major war. It is urgent that we take immediate action at all levels of government.
Massachusetts Democrats Support:
- Remembering and acting upon the reality that we have the resources in the public and private sectors to address climate change successfully if we promptly shift our resources toward smart policies and programs.
- Providing local, state, national, and international leadership in addressing climate change.
- Changing to a sustainable economy rather than one structured around the presumption of growth and presumed increases in population and consumption.
- Preparing for the anticipated impacts of climate change, including flooding, storms, species migration, heat waves, etc., and communicating with the public forthrightly about the realities of those impacts and the requirements of mitigation.
- Reducing fossil fuel consumption to the maximum extent possible. This includes rejection of tar sands oil, including the Keystone XL and Northeast pipelines; rejection of fracking; and elimination of coal capacity.
- Disinvesting taxpayer funds from programs and policies that subsidize fossil fuel production.
- Putting a price on carbon using a tax, a cap and trade system, or some other mechanism.
- Investing in wind, solar, and other renewable energy sources to replace fossil fuels.
- Accelerating weatherization and other programs to help individuals and businesses reduce the net amount of carbon entering the atmosphere, through methods that create local jobs whenever possible, that do not bloat bureaucracy, and do not merely subsidize or support existing state vendors but instead foster market creativity and innovation.
- Encouraging voluntary behavior changes that reduce the impacts of climate change and/or improve the ability to cope effectively.
- Updating and upgrading infrastructure projects of all types, including transportation systems, with commitments to minimize climate change and its impacts.
- Upgrading the Massachusetts public transportation system so that by 2060, 90% of the population in and near Boston can travel to destinations without using personal fossil-fueled vehicles. Alternative methods include public transportation, bicycles and other person-powered vehicles, as well as public personally-driven electric vehicles.
- Recognizing that the party with the strongest grass-roots organization will be in the best position to develop and implement the needed institutional, social and political changes required to cope with climate change.
- Coordinating networking opportunities within our grass roots organization by creating a Climate Action working committee as part of the State Committee, and a caucus of one or two members from each Town Committee to act as an ad-hoc subcommittee.