GreenLatinos Denounces Draconian House Interior Appropriations Bill

WASHINGTON— In response to the introduction of the House Subcommittee on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies draft FY24 funding bill, GreenLatinos issues the following statements:

“This anti-environment, pro-polluter budget proposal by House Republicans undermines decades of civic and environmental protections that benefit all Americans. Slashing funding for programs that advance public health protections, environmental stewardship, and social equity are a nonstarter and demonstrate a lack of good-faith negotiation,” said Pedro Hernández, GreenLatinos Public Land Advocate. "Some provisions within these Draconian proposals include prohibiting federal funds to teach Latino history at the Smithsonian, reversing protections for endangered species like the grizzly bear, and reneging on funds dedicated to federal diversity, equity, and inclusion programs throughout the Department of Interior. The House proposal defunds federal agencies such as the National Parks Service, Bureau of Land Management, and United States Forest Service; this is nothing other than a complete sabotage of the very agencies meant to ensure a healthy future for all Americans. The GreenLatinos community has issued written testimony and sign on letters to Congress to advance what interior really needs: more funds to meet our conservation and equity goals.”

“Budget cuts to the US Environmental Protection Agency, US Geological Survey, and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management will impede ongoing efforts to protect water and oceanic resources," said Val Schull, GreenLatinos Water Equity and Oceans Program Director. "Despite investments and efforts to combat environmental injustice and tackle the climate crisis, proposed budget cuts of $4 billion below current levels brings the agency to its lowest amount of funding since 1991. These cuts severely undercount the investments needed to reduce the ongoing water crises. Access to clean and affordable water, building resilience after flooding events or droughts, and a just energy transition are all essential for the wellbeing of millions of people.”

“This package represents an anti-environment position that will harm our communities, threaten public health and further exacerbate environmental degradation," said Andrea Marpillero-Colomina, GreenLatinos Sustainable Communities Program Director. "The transportation-related riders alone, including proposals to block implementation of DOT’s proposed Greenhouse Gas Emissions (GHG) Rule and slash the EPA’s GHG Reduction Fund, will perpetuate the outsize role of transportation as the primary source of U.S. GHG pollution and its harmful impacts. There is no question that embedded in this bill is the clear intent to inflict harms on the most disproportionately impacted communities. We must fight to maintain and increase protections for the welfare of all people.”

"At a time when the urgency of the climate change demands that our agencies be well-resourced to tackle this humanitarian crisis head on, House Republicans put forth a proposal riddled with attempts to entrench us deeper into this crisis and disempower nuestras comunidades," said Irene Burga, GreenLatinos Climate Justice & Clean Air Program Director. "Latinos are feeling the impacts of our changing climate today, as we continue experiencing record-breaking heat sweeping across the nation with our communities on the frontlines. Cutting the EPA’s budget to 1991 levels, diminishing critical dollars coming out of the IRA, mandating fossil fuel leasing in the Gulf, and blocking the Good Neighbor Plan are poison pills that undoubtedly threaten the health and safety of communities of color that already disproportionately bear the brunt of the climate crisis alongside harmful air pollution. This package is simply unacceptable and we urge our lawmakers to reject this regressive proposal immediately."


GreenLatinos (NOTE: GreenLatinos is ONE WORD) is an active comunidad of Latino/a/e leaders, emboldened by the power and wisdom of our culture, united to demand equity and dismantle racism, resourced to win our environmental, conservation, and climate justice battles, and driven to secure our political, economic, cultural, and environmental liberation.

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