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MT Conservationists Hail Congress' Moves on Climate, Infrastructure

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Thursday, August 26, 2021   

MISSOULA, Mont. -- Montana conservationists are praising a bipartisan infrastructure bill passed in the Senate as key for addressing the changing climate.

The bill has been tied to a budget resolution in the House, which also passed this week.

Dr. Allison Young, a pediatrician and member of the Montana Conservation Fund, praised Sen. Jon Tester, D-Mont., for his work as a central figure in crafting the infrastructure bill.

As the effects from climate change grow, Young said there is a lot at stake.

"Having these pieces of the infrastructure bill focus on domestic clean energy, trying to look at shifting investment in jobs to affordable clean energy and things that are going to lead to a more sustainable future are so important to child health and the future of kids," Young asserted. "And I say that as a mom and a pediatrician."

Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., was among the 30 senators who voted against the infrastructure measure, calling it a "tax and spend spree" from Democrats that will add to the federal deficit.

Young argued climate change is a threat to the Montana way of life, where public lands and outdoor recreation play an integral role in people's lives. After a summer that has been heavily impacted by wildfire smoke in Montana and across the West, she urged leaders to act quickly to address the threat.

"Our kids play outside! They always have. Their health depends on it," Young contended. "And as one facet of what we see in a changing climate, what we understand from the science, this summer was a glimpse; more extreme temperature and early smoke and poor air quality. It changes health."

The House Speaker, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., has tied the $3.5 trillion dollar budget resolution passed this week in the House to the $1 trillion infrastructure bill passed in the Senate earlier this month. She vowed the House will vote on the infrastructure bill by Sep. 27.

Disclosure: The Montana Conservation Voters and Education Fund contributes to our fund for reporting on the environment. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.


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