Budget investments show averting climate, water crises a priority
On Wednesday morning, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer rolled out a proposal for the largest state budget in history, with billions of dollars being dedicated toward natural resource protection, clean energy, clean water and climate resiliency.
Among the largest environmental investments are $1.22 billion for clean water; $593 million for climate, clean energy and mobility; and $403 million in natural resource protections.
Charlotte Jameson, chief policy officer of the Michigan Environmental Council, issued the following statement in response.
"Gov. Whitmer's proposed budget contains a multitude of major investments in clean water, clean air, natural resource protections and healthier communities," she said. "They are historic in their size, so they deserve to be highlighted, not buried. The climate and water crises have arrived and both are dire circumstances. They should be at the forefront of the budget like the other crises it addresses."
"In her State of the State address, Gov. Whitmer said Michiganders are resilient people. And it's true. We've weathered flooding, crop failures and air and water pollution, all in the backdrop of the pandemic, which is all the more reason why our environment must be a top priority."
Jameson also shared ways in which Gov. Whitmer could build off her historic investment proposals and called on the Legislature to act quickly.
"For the sake of our health, water and land, we urge the administration to match its water funding to what the Senate has proposed; expand programs that will rapidly reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and help our communities and residents adapt to the climate impacts they are experiencing now. While we will continue to seek higher investment, we believe the Legislature should move forward and support the budget the Whitmer administration outlined today."