HONOLULU, Hawai‘i – Senator J. Kalani English today called the signing of Senate Bill 559 and House Bill 1578 into law “a significant step towards our goal of reducing carbon emissions and the effects of climate change.”
Governor David Ige’s signature on SB 559 (Act 32) and HB 1578 (Act 33) demonstrates the administration’s support of the Legislature’s commitment towards enhancing the sustainability of the land and marine environment by creating incentives for limiting carbon emissions and provides the State with a guide to planning and mitigation strategies for the impact of climate change.
In support of these Acts, the four county mayors signed a commitment agreement to follow the goals enshrined in the Paris Accord, joining at least 68 mayors of other major U.S. cities who have already pledged their commitment to the Accord. The U.S. Constitution provides broad powers to State and local governments. With this authority, these governing bodies are able to set policies and standards to implement and enforce regulations that address the effects of climate change.
“I’m pleased to have the Governor and the County Mayors on board with the Legislature in recognizing the serious reality that climate change is having on our islands and the Pacific,” said Sen. English (Dist. 7 - Hāna, East and Upcountry Maui, Molokaʻi, Lāna‘i, Kaho‘olawe), who is the Senate Majority Leader and introduced SB559. “By working together, we will achieve the goals that were set forth by the international community in the Paris agreement to reduce carbon emissions by 2025.” Sen. English also noted that this effort is part of the Aloha+ Challenge and Hawai‘i’s 2030 statewide sustainability goals.
Sen. English is currently at the United Nations in New York where he is attending the UN Oceans Conference focused on the protection of the world’s oceans. He is joining experts, environmentalists, and leaders from nearly 200 countries in developing an action plan to conserve and manage the ocean’s resources.