clean water and air
"North Carolina has a fundamental obligation to protect clean water and air for all our people. We cannot permit pollution that threatens public health and undermines the future well-being of our families and communities. This duty includes enacting and enforcing laws that require polluters to pay the costs of cleaning up the messes they create. Public utilities like Duke Energy cannot be allowed to foist the cleanup costs from coal ash onto the taxpayers. Global corporations cannot be permitted to pad their profit margins by relying on outdated disposal methods which destroy the value of neighbors’ property and threaten their health. We must ensure that our public health and environmental protection agencies receive the funding and support they need to test for, monitor, and require cleanup of emerging toxic threats to our water supplies and our air.
A clean environment is compatible with a strong economy. In fact, the long-term health of our economy requires protection of public health and our abundant natural resources. We must protect our natural heritage of farmland, forest, fishing, and wildlife from the mountains to the sea. There is no need to jeopardize our irreplaceable coastal resources and economy with offshore oil and gas drilling, or to pollute our air with increased fossil fuel use. Instead, we must continue to develop our vast potential for clean, renewable energy sources, especially solar and wind. We must continue to improve the efficiency of our vehicles and improve green transportation alternatives, including public transit. Human-impacted climate change is real, and a growing threat to our children’s future. We must act now to address this problem while we still have time to do so.
I have worked on these issues since my teenage years, when I tracked down and reported water pollution problems in my home town of Hickory, NC. I worked as an attorney for poor families threatened by industrial pollution in coastal NC, and served for 20 years as a governor-appointed member of state rulemaking commissions charged with protecting clean water and air and public health. Most recently, I have worked here in Forsyth County and the Piedmont Triad for regional clean air quality and clean transportation alternatives. I will put this experience and knowledge to work for our communities and our families’ health in the state legislature."