NEVADA – Conservation Lobby Week continued for its third night, featuring an evening virtual town hall concerning Nevada’s clean energy economy and infrastructure and policies to address climate change.
(A recording of this event can be watched and downloaded here)
The program began with presentations led by climate policy advocates, including Rudy Zamora with Chispa Nevada, Jasmine Vazin with Sierra Club, and Dylan Sullivan with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Zamora spoke to the need for cutting smog pollution through policies such as closing the “Classic Car” loophole, which allows tens of thousands of older, smog-polluting vehicles to register as “classic vehicles” to skirt smog check rules.
“The policy we are working on this session is AB 349, a policy that was introduced by Assemblyman Watts, and what this does is reduce smog pollution by requiring cars to pass smog checks,” said Rudy Zamora, Program Director for Chispa Nevada. “Not only does it close the smog check loophole for “Classic Cars,” but it also improves public health. As the father of a six-year-old who has asthma and has been in and out of the hospital for the last few years and has serious complications, this bill will also make sure that he has cleaner air to breathe, for not only him but for children across the state and communities across the state.”
Following the presentations by conservation groups, Senator Chris Brooks and Assemblywoman Daniele Monroe-Moreno provided updates on the legislation they are working on to achieve the Governor’s statewide climate goal of net-zero emissions by 2050, while prioritizing the communities most at risk. The legislators took questions from advocates about the bills moving through their respective committees tackling these issues.
“If we want to rapidly decarbonize our electricity sector, if we want to access markets, if we want to join our regional market, and if we want to have more resiliency from what we’ve seen happen in Texas, and also to help as we are going to have higher peaks in the summertime, we need access to different markets. For all of those things, and to integrate 10 gigawatts of renewable energy into the grid, we need to have more transmission,” said Senator Chris Brooks. “[BDR 46] also ensures that both gas and electric utilities should have to prove that any investments they make are prudent, cost-effective, and necessary for the ratepayers.”
“Last session we passed AB 465 for expanded solar access. We need to make sure we continue to hold NV Energy accountable for finding locations in communities that need it most,” said Assemblywoman Daniele Monroe-Moreno. “It’s sunny in Nevada 98 percent of the time. We need to be the leaders in solar energy and in job creation.”
Tomorrow, March 25, members of the Nevada Legislature leadership, Senate Majority Leader Nicole Cannizzaro and Speaker of the Assembly Jason Frierson, will provide updates from their respective houses on the progress of this legislative session overall.
Conservation Lobby Week is hosted by the Nevada Conservation Network and features a series of nightly town halls March 22-25 discussing the urgent need for bold climate and conservation-centered policy with members of the Nevada Senate and Assembly, conservation leaders, and activists.