Environment

Minnesota—in protecting freshwater resources and leading the way in creating a clean energy economy—has always been at the forefront of crafting responsible environmental policy. Sen. Smith carries this spirit to Washington and continues to fight for federal policies that seek to combat climate change, preserve clean air and clean water, and protect our most precious natural landscapes.

Despite the great work being done in states like Minnesota, environmental challenges persist every day. Terrible accidents like the Flint water crisis where cost-cutting measures led to dangerous levels of lead in Michigan homes, and sweeping challenges like climate change, make clear that the federal government has an important role to play in protecting our environment. Ignoring this responsibility would put our natural treasures, our public health, and even our economy at risk.

Part of this responsibility means fighting back against efforts to rollback responsible environmental policy. Decisions like pulling out of the Paris Agreement, a landmark international agreement to address climate change, and undermining a plan to reduce air pollution are both outdated and out of touch with what most Americans want. Sen. Smith will fight back against policies that threaten our environment and our public health, but she stands ready work with her colleagues on both sides of the aisle to make sure our environmental policies work better for Minnesotans and all Americans.

Latest Releases

Senators Smith, Heinrich Introduce Clean Energy Jobs Act To Boost Energy Saving Opportunities, Career Access For Women And Minorities

WASHINGTON [7/27/2022] – Today, U.S. Senators Tina Smith (D-Minn.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) introduced the Clean Energy Jobs Act to meet growing energy workforce needs and create a comprehensive strategy at the Department of Energy (DOE) to increase participation among women and minorities throughout the industry. Energy jobs are some of the fastest growing occupations in America. From 2015 to 2019 the energy sector grew at twice the rate as the overall economy. In the coming years, there will be an increasing demand for trained workers, particularly in renewable energy, energy storage, and electrification. The Clean Energy Jobs Act helps meet this demand while providing good-paying jobs and increasing reliance on domestic manufacturing. “I always say that when it comes to transitioning to a clean energy economy, we can lead or follow—and I think we should lead,” said Sen. Smith, Co-Chair of the Electrification Caucus. “Transitioning to a clean energy economy isn’t just essential to reduce air pollution and combat climate change; it’s a huge economic opportunity for local communities in Minnesota and across the country. This legislation will help ensure we have a diverse and well-trained workforce ready to meet the demand for good-paying clean energy careers.” “As more and more families are able to access the cost-saving and health benefits of home electrification, we need a workforce that has the skillsets to get these plans across the finish line. The Clean Energy Jobs Act builds up the workforce to meet the demand, and increases opportunities for women, minorities,

Following Klobuchar and Smith Call, Biden Administration Approves Minnesota Request for Disaster Declaration

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) announced that the Biden administration has approved Minnesota’s request for a Major Disaster Declaration. Last month, Klobuchar and Smith led the entire Minnesota Congressional delegation in urging President Biden to approve Minnesota’s request, highlighting the need for federal assistance to help Minnesota communities recover from storms and historic flooding. “We’ve seen the impact of these storms and flooding in homes, businesses, and on our roads,” said Klobuchar. “I’m glad that the administration heeded my call to provide this federal disaster relief funding, which will be critical to helping communities across our state get the assistance they need.”  “Climate-fueled extreme weather has impacted every corner of our state,” said Smith. “In the face of historic flooding, Minnesotans showed their resilience and generosity. When flood waters rose and homes were damaged, volunteers and neighbors were quick to fill sandbags, clean up debris, and lend a hand to those in need. But impacted communities need substantive and timely federal assistance to speed up the recovery effort. I’m proud of our efforts to secure this support, which will go a long way towards helping communities rebuild.” Klobuchar and Smith have been actively working to secure resources for communities throughout the state that have been impacted by the recent flooding damage and the cold, wet spring weather. In June, they surveyed flooding and storm damage in International Falls with Governor Tim Walz (D-MN) and representatives from the Minnesota National Guard and Minnesota Department of

Senator Tina Smith’s Statement on Manchin’s Climate Change Reversal

Washington D.C. –  Today, U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) released the following statement in response to Senator Joe Manchin backing out – again – of negotiations on climate change legislation: “It’s infuriating and nothing short of tragic that Senator Manchin is walking away, again, from taking essential action on climate and clean energy. The world is literally burning up while he joins every single Republican to stop strong action to cut emissions and speed the transition to clean energy for the survival of our planet, clean air and health, energy independence, and lower energy prices. One Senator should not have

Klobuchar, Smith Lead Entire Minnesota Congressional Delegation in Urging Biden Administration to Approve Minnesota Request for Disaster Declaration

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Tina Smith (D-MN) led the entire Minnesota Congressional delegation in urging the Biden administration to approve Minnesota’s requests for Major Disaster Declarations to assist communities recovering from historic storms and flooding.  “We write to you in strong support of the state of Minnesota’s requests for Major Disaster Declarations under the Stafford Act to assist communities that are working to recover from severe weather this spring, including thunderstorms, tornadoes, high winds, and flooding. These natural disaster events have caused significant damage in our state, and we ask that you quickly grant approval

U.S. Senator Tina Smith’s Statement on West Virginia v. EPA Supreme Court Decision

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Senator Tina Smith (D-Minn.) issued the following statement in response to the West Virginia v. EPA Supreme Court decision: “For more than fifty years, the Clean Air Act has reduced pollution and improved air quality and health for families in Minnesota and across the country. Fifteen years ago, a conservative-majority court correctly ruled that this law could be the basis for regulating greenhouse gases—a decision that was reaffirmed in a unanimous opinion in 2011. “And yet, just 11 years later, this activist Supreme Court disregarded years of precedent and sided with large polluters and conservative special interests by

Senators Klobuchar, Smith Announce Significant Federal Funds to Increase Outdoor Access in Minnesota

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith (both D-MN) announced significant new federal funding to support outdoor access and recreation in Minnesota following Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland’s visit to the state. The new projects include outdoor recreation additions to the North End Community Center in St. Paul, improvements to Soldiers Field Park in Rochester, and an expansion and renovation of Willard Park in Minneapolis. “With our state’s lakes, parks, and trails, getting outside is central to Minnesotans’ way of life,” said Sen. Klobuchar. “By expanding green spaces and creating new outdoor recreational opportunities, this funding will help ensure that

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