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Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty

Representing the 5th District of Connecticut

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Energy and Environment

A cleaner environment is good for our health and good for our economy. We’ve felt the effects of climate change here in Connecticut with severe winter storms and hurricanes. We need to invest in clean energy and energy efficient technology to reduce pollution, create good-paying green jobs, and help small businesses and consumers save money.

As a parent, I believe we have an obligation to our children and future generations to preserve the Earth’s air, land, and water. I have a long-standing commitment to protecting our environment and working for a clean energy future. I worked for the Natural Resources Defense Council in law school and later worked to preserve open spaces as a local official. In the Connecticut State House, I served on the Energy & Technology Committee, where I fought for sweeping energy reform legislation to bring down high energy prices and move to renewable sources.

As your Congresswoman, I introduced the Collinsville Renewable Energy Promotion Act, legislation that permits the town of Canton to operate two small, currently inactive hydropower dams and generate clean, locally-produced power. I'm proud to say that my bill passed Congress with bipartisan support and has been signed into law, moving our communities one step closer to clean, sustainable power sources.

As a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I’ve stood up to protect our local rivers, streams, and lakes by testifying in defense of the Clean Water Rule. This proposal will protect 20 million acres of wetlands and drinking water for 117 million Americans.

I’m also working with my Connecticut colleagues, Sen. Chris Murphy and Rep. John Larson, to protect Connecticut’s Lower Farmington River and Salmon Brook for future generations. These are two unparalleled environmental treasures, and they possess some of the highest water quality in our state. In April 2016, the Senate passed our bill to preserve these vital resources, and we’re now working to get this legislation passed in the House.

Cities and towns throughout central and northwest Connecticut have long industrial histories – which means we also have miles of abandoned industrial sites that are just waiting to be restored into economic assets. These "brownfields" properties are going to waste now but have the potential to become anything from hiking trails and public parks to office buildings and shopping centers. I’ve introduced several pieces of legislation to help our communities revitalize these properties. One of these bills, the Brownfields Reauthorization Act, passed the Senate earlier this year and currently awaits action in the House.

I received a 97% lifetime score from the League of Conservation Voters for my voting record on environmental issues. Each year, I sign letters urging the House Appropriations Committee to support robust funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), North American Wetlands Conservation Act (NAWCA), the National Park Service, and for Wild and Scenic Rivers funding. Cuts to these programs would risk significant environmental and economic damage.

For more information on my work and views on energy and the environment or to let me know your thoughts, questions or concerns, please contact me. I look forward to hearing from you.

More on Energy and Environment

February 2, 2017 In The News

On Thursday the GOP-controlled House voted to overturn an Obama administration rule designed to keep firearms out of the hands of some people deemed mentally ill.

The action was the latest move by congressional Republicans to undo several of President Obama's regulations on issues such as gun control and the environment through an arcane law called the Congressional Review Act.

January 27, 2017 In The News
“This is a major priority for the state. Our delegation has doubled down on a commitment to make sure, at this critical juncture, we get what the citizens of Connecticut need and deserve to have right now,” said Esty.
January 24, 2017 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) today was elected by her Democratic colleagues to the position of Vice Ranking Member of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
January 20, 2017 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) today released the following statement after Donald J. Trump was sworn in as the 45th President of the United States.
January 3, 2017 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty (CT-5) was officially sworn in as a Member of the 115th United States Congress today,
November 28, 2016 In The News
Three members of Connecticut’s delegation in Washington got an early look at some of New Britain’s planned construction projects Monday as U.S. Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal and U.S. Rep. Elizabeth Esty joined Mayor Erin Stewart to talk about the city’s infrastructure and tour sites included in the Complete Streets Master Plan.
November 15, 2016 In The News

Members of Connecticut's all-Democratic congressional delegation slammed President-elect Donald Trump for choosing conservative news executive Steve Bannon as his chief strategist.

"Bannon has built his career peddling racist, sexist, and homophobic falsehoods," said Rep. Elizabeth Esty. "He is unfit to serve in any administration that values equality, diversity, peace, or even basic facts."

November 2, 2016 Press Release
Members of the Connecticut delegation applauded the U.S. Department of Interior's decision to designate James Merrill House in Stonington and the Steward’s House Foreign Mission School in Cornwall as national historic landmarks.
November 2, 2016 Press Release
Members of the Connecticut delegation announced today four USDA Rural Energy for America grants for renewable energy and energy efficiency at farms in Lebanon, Easton, Litchfield, and New Canaan.
November 1, 2016 Press Release
Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty's office has brought back over $10 million in federal and state refunds for residents in central and northwestern Connecticut.