Rep. Giffords: A strong advocate for green energy

Congresswoman Gabrielle “Gabby” Giffords is a woman of extraordinary courage and character. She has served her constituents with unwavering devotion. For over a decade, she has been an elected official representing the state of Arizona at both the state and federal level as a primary advocate for green energy. She firmly believes that global warming is induced by human actions and that it is necessary for us to take action to mitigate the situation in order to prevent further deterioration of the environment.

Congresswoman Giffords launched a Community Solar Energy Initiative in her district to further advance the use of solar energy. This initiative, embodied by a dynamic group of Arizonians that represent different constituencies including the scientific community, business leaders and other concerned citizens, is the endeavor that led to one of Ms. Giffords landmark pieces of legislation on solar energy.

This legislation, launched in 2007 was called the Solar Energy Research and Advancement Act and aimed to “supports the research, development, and commercial application of solar energy technologies and for other purposes”.  It was included in the historicHousing and Recovery Act of 2008, which was signed into law by President Obama.

Congresswoman Giffords also supported and voted for the American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, an energy bill which would have established emissions trading system that is akin to the European Emission Trading System.  The bill was approved by the House of Representatives but unfortunately died in the Senate.  She also supported an eight-year extension of the Investment Tax Credit for business and local solar projects and one-year extension of the 1603 Treasury Grant Program, which offers solar and other green energy developers a direct federal grant.  In addition, she launched the Solar Technology Roadmap Act, which passed the House but was not introduced in the Senate.                  

Earth Day Network would like to applaud her efforts in prioritizing alternative and renewable energy in Arizona, but also encouraging the rest of the country to follow suit. In Gabrielle’s moving resignation letter read earlier today by friend Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, she states:

“In public service, I found a venue for my pursuit of a stronger America by ensuring the safety and security of all Americans, by producing clean energy here at home instead of importing oil from abroad, and by honoring our brave men and women in uniform with the benefits they earned.””

While Gabrielle is retiring from her role as a public servant for now, her vow to return to serve Arizona and all Americans is highly anticipated by supporters of alternative energy across the nation.

To read Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords’ resignation letter, please click here: http://media2.abc15.com/html/pdf/Giffordsresignation.pdf