AbouT THE BILL | S.1602/H.2414
Massachusetts must lead on climate.
Climate change is a humanitarian crisis. Rising temperatures are contributing to more frequent and more severe extreme weather events - including floods, droughts, wildfires, and hurricanes.
From Barbuda to Bangladesh, the impacts of climate change are having a devastating and disproportionate impact on the poor. In order to avoid the worst predicted impacts of climate change and prevent future human suffering, we must dramatically reduce global emissions and invest in local resiliency solutions.
In 2015, world leaders adopted the historic Paris Climate Agreement, and pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Additionally, wealthier countries pledged financing to assist poor countries in strengthening resilience to impacts and transitioning to a clean energy economy.
In June 2017, however, President Trump announced his intent to withdraw the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement, turning his back on our allies and the global poor. In addition, President Trump moved to slash funding for international climate finance.
In reaction, Massachusetts State Senator Michael J. Barrett and Representatives Antonio F.D. Cabral and Tram T. Nguyen introduced Senate Bill 1602 and House Bill 2414 to create a voluntary check-off option for Massachusetts residents to donate a portion of their tax return to the Least Developed Countries Fund (LDCF).
Massachusetts could be the first state in America to take a stand and pass a law stepping up to support the international fight against climate change.The LDCF is a critical financial mechanism for climate adaptation projects in the 51 Least Developed Countries - the most vulnerable nations to climate change but who have contributed the least to the climate crisis.
S.1602/H.2414 would create an easily accessible opportunity for Massachusetts residents to take action and make a meaningful impact in the lives of those most affected by climate change. All contributions are voluntary, and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts would incur no costs to implement the bill.
This legislation intends to compliment contributions to the fund, and in no way does it seek to replace the federal government's obligation to support climate finance. Massachusetts can send a message of hope to the international community that the U.S. supports the Paris Climate Agreement.