Pacific Islands are amongst the first to see hard-hitting impacts of climate change—and Hawaiʻi is no exception. We are already seeing the impacts of climate change: eroding beaches and coastal roads, rain bombs and detrimental flooding, and rising sea levels and temperatures. These impacts can no longer be ignored and we are now at a critical time where we must massively reduce fossil fuel emissions. In 2015, Hawaiʻi committed to relying on 100% renewable energy sources by 2045. Then we upped the ante in 2018 by committing to be 100% carbon neutral by 2045. We must work hard to reach these goals and do more to ensure the transition to clean energy is accelerated and equitable.
Both the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Hawai‘i Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation Commission support carbon pricing as the most effective action to reduce emissions. However, no state has adopted a carbon tax and Hawai‘i's carbon tax could disproportionately affect low and moderate income communities if not implemented correctly. We feel the urgency of climate change but believe that whatever carbon tax is implemented needs to be the right fit for Hawai‘i. Any proposal must integrate environmental and economic justice principles while achieving measurable carbon emissions reductions. That is why one of our top priorities this session is HB 1584 - Carbon Pricing Study.
HB 1584 HD1 is being heard Wednesday, 2/13 at 2pm in room 329 in the House Committee on Consumer Protection and Commerce. Please take a couple minutes to submit your testimony today!