STAND. COM. REP. NO. 1035
RE: S.C.R. No. 44
Honorable Ronald D. Kouchi
President of the Senate
Thirty-First State Legislature
Regular Session of 2021
State of Hawaii
Your Committee on Agriculture and Environment, to which was referred S.C.R. No. 44 entitled:
"SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION DECLARING A CLIMATE EMERGENCY AND REQUESTING STATEWIDE COLLABORATION TOWARD AN IMMEDIATE JUST TRANSITION AND EMERGENCY MOBILIZATION EFFORT TO RESTORE A SAFE CLIMATE,"
begs leave to report as follows:
The purpose and intent of this measure is to declare a climate emergency and request statewide collaboration toward an immediate and just transition in emergency mobilization efforts to restore a safe climate.
Your Committee received testimony in support of this measure from the Hawaii State Energy Office, Office of Planning, one member of the Maui County Council, two members of the Hawaii County Council, City and County of Honolulu Board of Water Supply, Facing Future, Hawai‘i Youth Climate Coalition, Foresight and Policy Analysis, The Climate Mobilization, Pele Lani Farm LLC, Surfrider Foundation's Kona Kai Ea Chapter, Circlepack Hawaii, Think B.I.G., Kauai Climate Action Coalition, Environmental Caucus of the Democratic Party of Hawai‘i, Hawaii Electric Vehicle Association, Citizens' Climate Lobby Hawaii, Our Revolution Hawaii, Big Island Electric Vehicle Association, 350Hawaii.org, Zero Waste Kaua‘i, Surfrider Foundation Hawai‘i Region, Hawai‘i Reef Ocean Coalition, Mālama Kaua‘i, Community Coalition Kaua‘i, Pono Hawai‘i Initiative, Hawai‘i Alliance for Progressive Action, HI Strikes Back, Kaua‘i Women's Caucus, Surfrider Foundation Kaua‘i, Faith Action for Community Equity Environmental Justice Task Force, Climate Protectors Hawaii, and fifty-eight individuals. Your Committee received comments on this measure from Hawaiian Electric Company.
Your Committee finds that the climate crisis, caused primarily by fossil fuels, poses an existential threat to every aspect of society. The United Nations has declared this 2020-2030 decade as the "Decade of Action" to achieve the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals in alignment with the goals of the United Nations' Paris Agreement. A statewide declaration will amplify the commitments made by Maui County (Resolution No. 19-209) and Hawaii County (Resolution No. 322-19) and will allow Hawaii to join over one thousand nine hundred governments worldwide who have already declared climate emergencies.
Your Committee further finds that warming temperatures have caused destructive wildfires, stronger hurricanes, worsening droughts, floods, and coastal erosion from the rising sea levels. The climate crisis has been linked to the spread of disease, the destabilization of food and water security, and the unraveling of natural ecosystems, global warming causes billions in damages to the United States economy. The harms from fossil fuel extraction and climate disruption fall first and worst on communities with underrepresented, low-wealth, and frontline communities, especially for communities of color. Your Committee further finds that the overwhelming scientific consensus has concluded that without immediate and rapid emissions reductions, warming will exceed 1.5 degrees Celsius and will result in catastrophic damage, threatening the lives, health and safety, livelihood, the environment, economy, and national security for present and future generations.
Additionally, your Committee finds that climate mitigation and adaptation efforts grounded in equity, self-determination, and culture, including a statewide commitment to a just transition toward a decarbonized economy, a prohibition against fossil fuel infrastructure projects, and investment in energy efficient infrastructure and technologies are necessary to combat the climate crisis.
Your Committee has amended this measure by making technical, nonsubstantive amendments for the purposes of clarity and consistency.
As affirmed by the record of votes of the members of your Committee on Agriculture and Environment that is attached to this report, your Committee concurs with the intent and purpose of S.C.R. No. 44, as amended herein, and recommends its adoption in the form attached hereto as S.C.R. No. 44, S.D. 1.
Respectfully submitted on behalf of the members of the Committee on Agriculture and Environment,
MIKE GABBARD, Chair