Public Comments for 01/27/2021 Agriculture Chesapeake and Natural Resources
HB1928 - Historic resources; acquisition and lease of land.
Last Name: Strouse Organization: Virginia Animal Control Association (VACA) Locality: Norfolk, Virginia, United States

HB 2109 was not an option to select. That is the bill I wish to comment on, and it has been recommended for report by the Ag Sub-committee. HB 2109 as amended still has problems. A veterinarian is an expert on animal medicine and not necessarily on animal shelter regulations nor animal welfare. An addition to the Board should be an animal welfare expert, and there should be criteria to be met in order to be considered so. On behalf of VACA, we urge that this bill be tabled or carried over. Thank you. O

Last Name: Witherington Locality: palmyra

Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution, and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965. Thanks, Allen.

Last Name: schutt Locality: henrico va

We need more clean fuel vehicles in VA. Please help support them.

Last Name: Calvert Organization: Virginia Conservation Network Locality: Charlottesville

Virginia Conservation Network (VCN) and its 150 Partner organizations across the commonwealth SUPPORT: - HB1819 from Delegate Cole (http://www.vcnva.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/HB1819-Rappahannock-River.pdf) and - HB1928 from Delegate Aird. (http://www.vcnva.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/HB1928-broaden-historic-easements.pdf) It is our sincere hope that members of the committee will vote in support these pieces of legislation.

HB1965 - State Air Pollution Control Board; low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program.
Last Name: Crawford Organization: Roanoke Group, Sierra Club Locality: Roanoke City

The high level of pollution from transportation can be readily addressed in a win-win manner and HB1965 will go a long way toward that end. Please support it. thank You, Dan Crawford

Last Name: Manard Organization: none Locality: Chesapeake

Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero-Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965. Respectfully, Michael Manard Chesapeake

Last Name: Walton Shepherd Organization: NRDC Locality: Richmond

NRDC's nearly 10,000 paying members across the Commonwealth support "Clean Cars" -- and Del. Reid's companion HB1979, as Virginia's biggest - and CHEAPEST - climate action in history, delivering at least TRIPLE the pollution reductions of last year's Clean Economy Act. Thank you for voting YES on this (and Reid's companion HB1979) to tackle climate change.

Last Name: Artis Organization: Consumer Reports Locality: Washington, DC

Consumer Reports Supports HB 1965.

Last Name: Boehmer Organization: Environment Virginia Locality: Richmond

Chairman and members of the committee, Thank you for your consideration of HB 1965 which would establish advanced clean car standards in Virginia. Environment Virginia strongly supports this bill. Virginia needs clean cars to help our environment, economy and health. Transportation is the largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Virginia- most of which comes from personal vehicles. As we move away from dirty fossil fuels to power our homes, businesses and schools, we must move away from the dirty fossil fuels that power how we get around. This bill creates a market for clean vehicles in Virginia, finally giving Virginians the choice to buy clean cars in the Commonwealth. We ask that you HB 1965 and vote to report the bill. Thank you for your consideration. Elly Boehmer, Environment Virginia State Director, eboehmer@environmentvirginia.org, (c) 847-775-9778

Last Name: Gordon Organization: Virginia Conservation Network Locality: Richmond

Support Our Environment Transportation accounts for 48% of all carbon emissions in Virginia (VCN, 2020). • Switching to an electric vehicle can result in a 70% reduction in carbon emissions under Virginia’s current energy mix (Dept of Energy, 2020) • EVs will continue to get cleaner as Virginia honors its electricity generation goals stipulated by the Virginia Clean Economy Act •Recent research suggests that a low-emission vehicles (LEV) program could result in annual climate benefits of roughly of $120 to $520M by 2035 (VCCA, 2020) Support Public Health Pollution from conventional vehicles contributes to respiratory illnesses (asthma) and heart disease (VCCA, 2020). • The overall health burden of vehicle emissions in VA is $750M per year (VCCA, 2020) •Air pollution-related health costs are borne disproportionately by VA’s most vulnerable communities •Recent research suggests that a zero-emission vehicles (ZEV) program could result in annual health benefits of roughly of $102M by 2035 (VCCA, 2020) Support EV Demand Lack of EV inventory at Virginian auto dealerships is a major impediment to adoption. • Survey of Virginians found 53% are likely or very likely to consider an EV for their next car (Generation180, 2020) • EVs are popular among Virginians, but Virginia new-car dealerships do not have adequate inventory (Generation180, 2020) Support the Adoption of Electric Vehicles in Virginia

Last Name: Malady Locality: Chester

We are critically deficient in our current actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to avoid exceeding 1.5 C degrees of warming and prevent the likelihood of catastrophic climate change, massive devastation to global food production and the unrelenting ravages of extreme weather and sea level rise that will destroy Virginians prosperity on a mammoth scale. That's not a personal opinion, that's the best scientific analysis by climate experts. [see any and all of the UN IPCC reports since 2018]. We are in the middle of a slow moving disaster. Del. Bagby's bill is merely a minor-- but absolutely necessary-- turn away from our course into the 6th mass extinction event that humanity has initiated. STOP wasting time. STOP pretending that we have all the time in the world to 'fix' global warming. We are out of time. We need legislation that ends our transportation emissions of greenhouse gases this decade. Again, that's not my opinion. That's the geophysics of the increasing probability of abrupt climate collapse, the moral imperative of the enormity of our past emissions and our claim to be world leaders for human and civil rights. It's time to put up or shut up. The house is on fire. I challenge all of you to spend 15 minutes reviewing the data at https://ourworldindata.org/co2-and-other-greenhouse-gas-emissions, share the information with your constituents and then try to tell them you can't do better than this, while I weep for our children.

Last Name: Esteves Organization: Ceres Locality: N/A

Businesses across the country are making ambitious commitments to reduce emissions and transition to clean vehicles. This stems from the expectation of shareholders, customers and employees that businesses do their part to tackle climate change and air pollution, but clean vehicles also benefit their bottom line. Gasoline savings and the reduced maintenance required by zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) means vehicle owners can save significant time and money over the lifetime of the vehicle. With ZEVs expected to reach price-parity with conventional vehicles within the next couple of years, the savings benefits of ZEVS will be even greater. To meet growing demand, automakers plan to release nearly 100 new ZEV models by 2024. Adopting clean car standards can ensure these vehicles are available to be purchased in Virginia. Coupled with a suite of policies and investments that prioritize vehicle charging infrastructure and other incentives, clean car standards can help Virginia embrace innovation, attract investments and transition to a cleaner, modern transportation system. For these reasons, Ceres stands alongside many Virginia businesses in urging state lawmakers to support HB1965. Thank you for your consideration.

Last Name: Greg Singleton Locality: Fairfax County

I strongly support House Bill 1965. The Harvard School of Public Health estimates that around 750 Virginians die prematurely every year because of exposure to tailpipe pollution – nearly the same number that are killed in car accidents on an annual basis. And while we all deserve to breathe the same clean air, pollution from cars disproportionately impacts low-income regions and communities of color – the same communities already on the frontlines of the climate crisis. Cleaning up our transportation system will take years of concerted effort – but it begins with getting standards into place to make zero-emission vehicles more accessible, and to meet already high consumer demand for cleaner cars. This standard paired with upfront consumer incentives and a push to expand charging infrastructure across the state will mean long-term gains in transportation electrification and cleaner air.

Last Name: Fisette, Jay Organization: Self Locality: Arlington County

I strongly support HB1965 as a foundational step to reducing the carbon emissions generated from automobiles in Virginia. Ensuring that low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicles are available in showrooms will meet consumer demand and ensure Virginians don't travel outside the state to purchase electric vehicles. Companion legislation to provide a tax rebate will also provide important early support for consumers and for the auto dealers. Having created the Go Green Virginia program as President of the Virginia Municipal League years ago, I am sure that this legislation will help many local governments meet their carbon reduction and sustainability goals. Please support HB1965.

Last Name: Jemaine Organization: CCAN Action Fund Locality: glen allen

Members of the Committee, My Name is Kim Jemaine and I am the Virginia Director for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network and CCAN Action Fund. Last year, Richmond faced recurrent flooding, the West Coast was ravaged by wildfires, and the world saw a historic number of natural disaster events. The impacts of climate change are a real and present danger. In 2020, Virginia took significant strides to reduce emissions from the energy sector. Now, we have to turn to the next challenge. Carbon emissions from the transportation sector account for close to half of ALL carbon emissions in Virginia. We simply cannot seriously address climate change without addressing transportation related emissions. In order to reduce transportation related emissions, we will need to rethink housing, how we build our cities, the vehicles we drive, and our transit infrastructure. HB 1965 will provide one tool to tackle these emissions. By adopting the low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program, Virginia will reduce transportation related emissions and expand access to electric vehicles. This bill is good for the environment, good for public health, and good for consumers. CCAN Action Fund Supports HB 1965 and encourages you to do the same.

Last Name: Kruse Organization: Community Climate Collaborative Locality: CHARLOTTESVILLE

Dear Committee Members, On behalf of 8 cities and counties representing more than 1 million Virginians, the Community Climate Collaborative respectfully submits this letter for your consideration. Susan Kruse, Executive Director Dear Members of the Virginia General Assembly, As a community of Virginia municipalities, we urge lawmakers to empower our localities and businesses to usher in a clean economy, reduce air pollution, and improve public health by supporting policy which expands access to low and zero emissions vehicles. Fossil fuel based transportation threatens our air quality and significantly increases community healthcare costs. A recent study from Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action (VCCA) found that the health impacts attributable to Virginia-specific transportation emissions are valued at $750 million annually. Moreover, air pollution and the associated costs disproportionately impact low-income and minority communities, where respiratory illness is correlated with higher exposure to emissions from fossil fuel vehicles. The VCCA study found that Virginia could significantly reduce healthcare costs by implementing low and zero emissions vehicle standards. Climate change also poses a significant risk to the health, livelihood, and economic stability of our communities. Recognizing these risks, our communities are making ambitious commitments and taking action to improve energy efficiency, adopt clean energy, and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Transportation is responsible for 48% of climate emissions statewide and is a significant contributor to each of our community-wide emissions as well. Vehicle electrification is essential to our ability to reduce emissions at the community level. Despite the significant health and climate benefits of vehicle electrification, unfortunately, auto manufacturers do not provide Virginia automotive dealers with many low and zero emission vehicles, leaving our citizens with little from which to choose. Sixteen states have already passed standards requiring manufacturers to increase the availability of low-emission and zero-emission vehicles. Combining these standards with tax incentives for purchase of these vehicles will accelerate transportation electrification, improve public health, and support Virginia’s continued leadership on climate change. We ask the General Assembly to pass legislation which increases the availability of low and zero emissions vehicles in Virginia and provides consumers financial incentives to choose them. Our localities want to ensure that all Virginians can enjoy a thriving economy, a clean environment, and healthy communities for the many generations to come. We hope that the General Assembly will partner with us to turn this vision into reality. Sincerely, County of Albemarle, Board of Supervisors Mayor Justin M. Wilson, Alexandria City Council Vice Mayor Elizabeth Bennett-Parker, Alexandria City Council County of Arlington, Board of Supervisors Mayor Leslie Hager-Smith, Town of Blacksburg City of Charlottesville, City Council Mayor David L. Meyer, City of Fairfax Mayor Kenneth Cooper Alexander, City of Norfolk Mayor Levar M. Stoney, City of Richmond

Last Name: Miller Organization: Dr. (Ms.) LCV, VCCA Locality: Richmond

I did my medical training at UCLA in the 70's. The air pollution was terrible. It causes excess asthma attacks and heart attacks. That is why California developed its own Clean Car standards. In Virginia where I cared for your constituents for 39 years, 750 people die prematurely per year because of tailpipe pollution. I have driven a hybrid since 2004 and in 2018 I switched to an EV. But I am a physician. The Virginia legislature needs to get the EV charging infrastructure in place now, and needs to make EVs available to people with lower incomes by way of incentives to dealers and buyers. In 2018 I bought my car in Maryland because local dealers in Richmond did not have EVs on the lot. Virginia lost my taxes. For the health of my patients and the planet pass HB1965. Susan Miller MD FAAFP

Last Name: Christopher Harto Locality: Arlington, VA

I support the passage of HB1965. The reduction of harmful air pollution and greenhouse gases is vital to the health and wellbeing of Virginians like myself. While in the past Virginians could rely on strong federal standards for vehicle emissions, those standards were recently gutted, leaving us all vulnerable. If we have learned anything in the recent past, it's that Virginia cannot count of the federal government for protection. If we want clean air for our families we're going to have to take matters into our own hands. HB1965 provides Virginians with the tools to protect ourselves from harmful air and climate pollution, and to guarantee our children a brighter and cleaner future.

Last Name: Entsuah Organization: Virginia Advanced Energy Economy Locality: Richmond, Virginia

Virginia Advanced Energy Economy SUPPORTS HB 1965. This "Clean Cars" legislation will ensure that the supply of electric vehicles in the Commonwealth meets the demand of Virginia consumers and will provide predictability to the EV charging industry. Recent studies indicate a majority of Virginia consumers are likely to consider an EV for their next purchase. Vehicle availability, however, is a key pain point, with EVs and plug-in hybrids prioritized for states with "Clean Cars" standards. Accelerating consumer access to these vehicles will help to increase uptake and provide a more robust market for the entire advanced transportation industry. Advanced Transportation already employs 5,400 people in the Commonwealth - jobs tied not only to the manufacturing and maintenance of EVs, but also the infrastructure that supports them. Electrifying transportation in Virginia, in addition to reducing emissions and benefiting public health, will help draw new jobs and investment to our Commonwealth. A "Clean Cars" standard is an essential part of how Virginia electrifies transportation, hand-in-hand with infrastructure and incentives. We hope the Committee will pass this legislation and look forward to working with the General Assembly on a range of legislation which, together, will move our Commonwealth in the right direction.

Last Name: Bagwell Organization: Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action Locality: Richmond

Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action (VCCA) is a network of over 400 doctors, nurses, and allied health professionals advocating for climate change solutions that protect the health of our patients and communities. VCCA strongly supports the passage of House Bill 1965 on Clean Car Standards. Transportation is the cause of 48.5% of carbon dioxide (CO2) pollution in Virginia (Energy Information Administration). Additionally, 34% of all CO2 pollution in Virginia is from cars, pick-up trucks, and SUVs (EPA). The total CO2 pollution from these vehicles alone is more than that from power plants. CO2 pollution is detrimental to the health and wellbeing of Virginia patients and communities. According to our Report on Transportation Emissions in the Commonwealth, transportation pollution in Virginia alone leads to 2,600 asthma attacks and 3,310 cases of bronchitis and respiratory symptoms in children, 92 premature deaths, and $750 million in health costs annually. These figures more than double when also factoring in transportation pollution coming from out of state. Transportation pollution especially harms vulnerable populations. Socially vulnerable communities (those in minority groups, lower wealth, and non-English speaking populations) experience 61% higher death rates in Virginia due to air pollution. Children, older adults, and pregnant people are also disproportionately impacted by transportation pollution through their increased risk of developing heart disease, strokes, cancer, and respiratory illnesses like asthma (American Lung Association). By passing HB 1965, Virginia would join 14 other states in adopting stronger clean car standards. Incentivizing the use of low and zero emission-electric vehicles (which create just ⅓ of the carbon pollution of an average gas-powered car according to the Department of Energy), would help reduce our levels of transportation pollution, save lives, and protect our children’s future. Specifically, we expect passage of HB 1965 to lead to a 13% decrease in vehicle greenhouse gas pollution in 2035, $102 million saved annually in health costs by 2035, and $120-$520 million saved in benefits from reduced carbon pollution. VCCA asks that the Agriculture and Natural Resources committee pass HB 1965 in order to reduce traffic-related air pollution, clean our air, and improve the health of all Virginians.

Last Name: KIeymeyer Organization: Center for the Support of Native Lands Locality: Arlington

As a Virginian, I am very interested in having the maximum number of electric vehicles and hybrid vehicles on Virginia roads. Please do whatever you can to accomplish this!

Last Name: Jacobs Organization: EVA/DC Locality: Herndon

I write in support of HB1965. This bill would add Virginia to the Clean Car Standard LEV and potentially ZEV states. Too often I have had friends like Dan who wanted an affordable EV like the SparkEV and couldn't get it. He had to wait for one to be sold in Maryland, a ZEV state, and then go over the border to get it second-hand. This, and other instances like it have let to the stifling of Electric Car adoption in the commonwealth. Virginians want to buy electric cars, and this bill would allow them! I urge you to support Del. Bagby's bill.

Last Name: Lewis Organization: The Nature Conservancy Locality: Charlottesville

The Nature Conservancy asks the Committee to support HB 1965. Light-duty vehicles - cars, SUVs, and light-duty trucks - account for 34% of all carbon dioxide pollution in Virginia. That’s more that the total carbon emissions from our power sector. Electric vehicles are essential to helping Virginia decarbonize our transportation sector. An electric car causes just 1/3 the carbon dioxide pollution of an average gas-powered car, and that amount will decrease as the power sector gets cleaner. According to Consumer Reports, a third of prospective car buyers in Virginia would consider buying an electric vehicle in the next two years. Yet the majority of Virginian car buyers do not see electric vehicles at their local dealerships. The reason is that some manufacturers prioritize sending electric vehicles to states that have adopted Clean Car Standards. Consequently, many Virginians are missing out on the opportunity to test drive and purchase more affordable makes and models of electric vehicles. Virginia should adopt the Clean Car Standards so that manufacturers will send more electric vehicles to Virginia dealerships. Sixty-five percent of Virginians are worried about climate change and want citizens to do more to address it. One of the most effective personal actions an individual can take to reduce their carbon footprint is to trade their gas-powered vehicle for an electric one. We are dependent upon manufacturers to send these vehicles to Virginia to ensure that people who want them have access. The targets set by Clean Car Standards are achievable based on today’s consumer demand for EVs, but they would not go into effect until 2024. This delay gives manufacturers and dealerships time to prepare. This delay is also why it’s imperative to pass the bill this year.

Last Name: St Ledger-Olson Organization: Generation180 Locality: Charlottesville

On behalf of clean energy nonprofit Generation180 and our statewide network of EV owners and ambassadors, we ask you to support House Bill 1965, which directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle standards beginning with vehicle model year 2025. These standards are critical to addressing climate change, improving public health, and supporting Virginia’s transition to a clean energy future. The transportation sector produces 48% of Virginia’s carbon emissions, and these emissions disproportionately impact communities of color. By passing HB 1965, the General Assembly would guarantee the Commonwealth’s access to the cleanest and most advanced vehicles on the market and accelerate electric mobility in Virginia.

Last Name: Pien Organization: Loudoun Climate Project Locality: Leesburg

This is a good bill for VA. It is an essential part of addressing, mitigating climate change. There is no cost to VA government or to VA residents. Please pass it Thank you

Last Name: Amel Locality: Arlington

As a long-time resident of Arlington, I believe that Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution, and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965.

Last Name: Tsuchiya Organization: Union of Concerned Scientists Locality: Washington, DC

*Citations available* The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) is the nation’s leading science-based nonprofit putting rigorous, independent science to work to solve our planet's most pressing problems. On behalf of UCS’s more than 7,900 supporters in VA, we strongly support passage of HB1965, which would direct the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement the Low Emission Vehicle (LEV) and Zero Emission Vehicle standards (ZEV). The LEV standard requires automakers to sell vehicles that are less greenhouse gas (GHG) emitting year over year. The policy complements the federal GHG emission and criteria pollutant standards for cars and trucks. Together, the federal fuel economy and GHG emissions standards for light-duty vehicles represent the largest policy action to reduce GHG emissions and oil use in the United States. With transportation emissions the largest sources of GHG pollution in Virginia, it is more important than ever to take action. The LEV standard would ensure emissions from cars and trucks are on a downward trajectory as we strive to meet our climate goals to protect the health and welfare of Virginians. The ZEV standard ensures that automakers research, develop, and market electric vehicles (EVs), and it's considered one of the nation’s most forward-looking climate policies and a driving force behind the expanding EV market. Virginia is already experiencing the impacts of climate change driven by combustion of fossil fuels, and these impacts are projected to worsen without bold action to limit emissions. The ZEV standard is a potential solution that will help address both air quality and climate change, as plug-in EVs charged on the electric grid that includes Virginia generate less than half the GHG emissions of average gas-powered cars and don’t emit health-harming tailpipe pollution when driving on electricity. While the impact will be small initially, the most important part of adopting the ZEV standard will be to put Virginia on a clear path towards lower emissions. Policies that promote transportation electrification, such as the ZEV standard, are crucial because the air pollution from vehicles on Virginia’s roads today is significant. With the inclusion of affected communities in the state’s rulemaking and other decision-making processes around transportation, Virginia is being handed an opportunity to redress past actions. The ZEV program is also a win for consumers. Fueling an EV at home typically costs significantly less than fueling a gasoline-powered vehicle. For instance, charging an EV at home in Virginia Beach is like paying $0.50 per gallon of gasoline. EV owners can also save an average of $2,100 in maintenance costs over the life of an EV compared with a similar gasoline car. Recent analysis confirms that drivers in urban, suburban, and rural Virginia could save hundreds of dollars per year from switching from a conventional gasoline vehicle to an electric vehicle. Decisionmakers can help hasten the transition to clean transportation by adopting the LEV and ZEV standards to ensure Virginians have access to a diverse choice of less polluting cars and trucks, which will help to address both unhealthy air pollution and GHG emissions. The standards are ambitious but feasible and Virginia should take advantage of their benefits for the health and welfare of Virginians across the state. We strongly encourage legislators to pass HB1965. Sincerely, Alyssa Tsuchiya atsuchiya@ucsusa.org 

Last Name: Wilensky Organization: Dr. (Mr.) Locality: Fairfax

I'm submitting this comment as a health professional and Virginia resident. Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution, and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965. As noted above, other states have standards like this in place already. There are no good reasons why Virginia shouldn't join them now.

Last Name: Ferguson Organization: ARTivism Virginia Locality: Charlottesville

Please support and pass HB 1965. At this juncture, how we go will determine where we go. This bill supports choices for transportation that will take us to a future of health, sustainability and investments that are viable long term as opposed to stranded. We must seek every immediate and affordable way to meet the imperative facts of climate change. This is a good step.

Last Name: Hager Organization: Northern Virginians for Peace and Justice Locality: Fairfax Co, VA

America is over a decade into the era of electric vehicles (marked by the first Tesla sedan and the responses, like the Chevy Volt), and it's way past time to move away from internal combustion cars, trucks and busses. Please move to enact HB 1965-- and put an emphasis on making school busses at the top of the list for publicly-financed vehicles. Save our kids and the Earth they are going to inherit. -Lawrence C. Hager, in Fairfax Co.-- zip 22041

Last Name: Bubon Locality: Loudoun

The only thing that prevented me from buying an electric car three years ago was lack of convenient charging stations. With this problem solved and better batteries, I am sure we can greatly improve our pollution problem.

Last Name: Stevens Locality: Arlington

Europe and China are transitioning to electric vehicles at a pace faster than that of the United States. This is because they both employ government pressure on the auto maker to make this transition. I consider myself a conservative and am not generally not keen on the government setting parameters for how the free market operates, but this is a case where electric vehicles are clearly the correct path forward, both for the consumer and the environment. It's the future and there's no going back. And we need to pressure U.S. auto makers to get there as quickly as possible, otherwise we risk being left behind. In the early 1970's it would have seemed ridiculous to suggest that many of us would be driving around Japanese cars by the end to the decade. We're at that same inflection point with China today, and we need to move quickly.

Last Name: Lavy Locality: Harrisonburg

Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution, and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965.

Last Name: Witherington Locality: palmyra

Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution, and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965. Thanks, Allen.

Last Name: schutt Locality: henrico va

We need more clean fuel vehicles in VA. Please help support them.

Last Name: Pennington Locality: Alexandria

The history of lead in paint and gasoline is appalling. Everybody knew since the Romans that lead was poisonous but money, greed, and cranky thinking left lead in these products long after they should have been removed. Car emissions kill, both in the short term and the long term. Everybody knows it but banning emissions faces the same enemies that lead removal faced. Money, gree and crank thininking. Please don't fall into that old way of thinking. We have the technology to do away with harmful emissions. Please support HB1965. PS. I’m not going to mention the shameful history of tobacco.

Last Name: Gerena Organization: Drive Electric RVA Locality: Chesterfield County

Covering my roof are 24 solar panels that generate clean, renewable electricity. A compost bin sits near the rolling trash can that I use to collect recyclables. Metal and plastic straws sit near my sink waiting to be rinsed off and reused. But that isn’t the only reason why an electric car sits in my driveway. ¶ Seven years ago, I was looking to buy a new car because my old one was becoming a gas guzzler and gasoline cost more than $3 a gallon. My search was confined to vehicles with good fuel efficiency, but were large enough to haul around my wife and daughter, groceries, shopping bags from Target and Costco, and so on. “I had narrowed my choices down to the Toyota Pruis, but the hybrid had a reputation for being about as fun to drive as cardboard box and severely lacking in the acceleration department. So, while I wanted to save money (and also reduce my carbon footprint) if the car wasn’t nice to drive, I wasn’t interested. ¶ Then I learned about the Nissan Leaf, an all-electric car. I checked around and no Nissan dealership in Richmond had one to test drive. I had to travel an hour and a half to Charlottesville to test drive a LEAF. It was worth the trip — the car had lots of get-up-and-go but handled well, and the ride was so quiet I could hear my surroundings with the windows rolled down. Within a few weeks, I got the color and trim level I wanted, but I had to get the car from North Carolina, costing me almost $200 extra. ¶ I share this story because it is the main reason why I am asking this committee to support the Clean Car Standards bill, HB1965. As I mentioned before, it wasn’t easy for me to buy an electric vehicle seven years ago. Worse, the salesperson that I dealt with knew less about the car than I did. The situation hasn’t improved much — shopper studies conducted by the Sierra Club found that most dealerships do not display EVs prominently, have one ready for a test drive, or provide accurate information for consumers. ¶ And yet, despite this handicap, EV sales have steadily risen over the years while other light vehicle sales have declined, even during the pandemic. Electric vehicles now account for about 2 and a half to 3 percent of the market and hundreds of thousands of EVs are on America’s roads — but mostly in California and 12 other states that follow its Clean Car Standards. It is these states that get the lion’s share of inventory because they signal that clean cars are the future. This can be Virginia’s future as well.

Last Name: Lang Organization: Virginia Democracy Forward; We of Action Locality: Arlington

Please pass the Clean Car Standards Bill, HB 1965. There are 14 states and the District of Columbia that have already passed similar legislation and this is the only way we will get zero emission and low emission vehicles sold in VA. I live in Arlington and would have to go to the District or Maryland to buy one (and I am definitely thinking about buying one). There are some great new electric vehicles coming to the market and it is time for VA to get in the game. And, it is the right thing to do. Transportation causes about 1/2 of VA's carbon dioxide and particulate matter emissions that worsen asthma and other health problems, especially for low income communities. (I am a retired DOJ attorney who enforced the Clean Air Act for my career and am acutely aware of the negative health effects of air pollution.) This Bill does not require the Air Pollution Control Board to implement the program until 2025. This leaves more than enough time for car dealers to adjust to this. Delaying another year is not the solution. Thanks. Annette Lang, Arlington.

Last Name: Cayce Locality: Albemarle County

I ask the Committee to pass the Clean Car Standards bill (HB1965) which directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement a low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program for motor vehicles beginning with automobile model year of 2025 and later. Transportation causes almost half of Virginia’s CO2 emissions and particulate pollution that exacerbates asthma and other health problems particularly for low-income communities living in urban areas. The American Lung Association found that in Virginia alone, the transition to zero-emission vehicles could, by 2050, save more than $1.3 billion in health costs every year, including those associated with premature deaths, asthma attacks and lost workdays. Transportation produces 48% of CO2 emissions in VA, and 70% of that fraction is from personal vehicles (Energy Information Administration, Table 4; EPA National Emissions Inventory). By contrast, the electricity to power an EV in Virginia emits less than 30% of the CO2 emitted by an equivalent gasoline car (Department of Energy study). Adoption of the Clean Car standards is projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by almost 3 million metric tons by 2040, greatly helping Virginia meet its climate goals. We cannot in good conscience do everything we can to provide a livable future for our children and the next generations. This bill is a notable step toward that future and I urge the Committee to pass it immediately.

Last Name: Wiley Organization: Virginia Grassroots Coalition Locality: Alexandria

I care deeply about promoting the health of the planet and the health of its people, including those who suffer from asthma and other respiratory conditions. Science tells us that stronger rules curbing pollution are critically needed by people and the environment, and that the timing is urgently NOW. I ask the Committee to pass HB 1965, Clean Car Standards, this session. It will help greatly to prevent CO2 emissions and other pollutants, given that almost half of the CO2 emissions in Virginia are caused by transportation, mostly from vehicles. Also, we want to make Virginia a "Clean Air State" to increase the supply of electric vehicles available to us as consumers so we will be able to buy them when can. Even enacting this bill NOW will only set in motion a two-plus year waiting period so the Committee cannot responsibly delay this decision if they seek to serve their constituents' needs and to act responsibly to protect our environment.

Last Name: Cook Organization: Virginia Grassroots Coalition/Virginia Democracy Forward Locality: Fairfax County

I support the passage of this bill for a low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program for motor vehicles. This action will help combat CO2 emissions and other pollutants, expand consumer choice, and improve public health.  Transportation causes almost half of the CO2 emissions in our state.  Fourteen states and the District of Columbia have already adopted Clean Car standards.  “Clean Car” states get preferential allocation of electric vehicles from many auto manufacturers.  This means that Virginia car buyers will have fewer electric vehicles to choose from if this bill is not passed.

Last Name: Morrow Locality: McLean

I would like to ask the committee to pass the Clean Car Standards bill (HB1965) that directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement a low-emissions and 0-emissions vehicle program for motor vehicles with a model year of 2025 and later. We need this bill for combatting carbon dioxide emissions and other pollutants, expand consumer choice, and improve public health. Transportation causes almost half of VA’s carbon dioxide emissions, and particulate pollution that exacerbates asthma and other health problems, particularly for those living near major roads. Fourteen states and the District of Columbia have already adopted clean car standards, and I believe that this will greatly improve the life and health of not only Virginians but all Americans as a larger number of states adopt these standards.

Last Name: Gerena Organization: Drive Electric RVA Locality: Chesterfield County

Electric vehicles cost more than their gasoline powered counterparts — $7,500 as of August 2020, according to Kelley Blue Book. This is primarily due to the cost of their battery. Studies have found that incentives aimed at reducing that price differential are a significant driver for increased EV adoption. It’s not necessarily because consumers whip out their calculator to see how much the rebate will reduce their total cost of ownership. It’s because they will perceive EVs as a better value than gasoline cars — they’ll pay less of a premium to get all of the benefits of EV ownership. Rebates are generally more effective than tax credits, and those that are provided at the point of sale are the most effective. People tend to discount the value of rewards they receive in the future versus the present. In addition, not every consumer earns enough income to have a tax liability to apply a credit towards. Finally, a point-of-sale rebate applied to the manufacturer’s suggested retail price would incentivize both the purchasing and leasing of EVs. A rebate program should be as agnostic as possible about which electric vehicles are eligible. This has several benefits. First, it is simpler for car buyers and sellers to understand and for the program manager to implement . Second, broad eligibility would maximize the impact of the program and minimize market distortions. Consumers should be able to pick the car that is right for them, whether it is a plug-in hybrid or all electric, is new or used, is purchased or leased, or has a large battery or a small one. Auto manufacturers shouldn’t be discouraged from pursuing innovations like plug-in hybrids that use hydrogen rather than gasoline, or from producing cars with bigger batteries.

Last Name: Shippee Organization: Sierra Club Locality: Henrico

HB1965 is absolutely critical to improving the supply of electric vehicles to Virginia. Today, the Commonwealth misses out on a portion of the economic benefits, including tax revenue, on the sales of EVs, because residents have to leave the state to buy some models. In addition, this bill will help Virginia begin to deal with the large carbon emissions problem in the transportation sector. With a multiple-year lead time before the targets take effect, manufacturers and dealers will be able to comfortably meet the goals.

Last Name: Stowe Locality: Alexandria

I write in support of HB 1965 and its low emissions and zero emissions vehicle (LEV/ZEV) program. The transportation sector is a major producer of CO2 and other pollutants, so the elimination of Internal Combustion Vehicles (ICVs) must be an essential component of our effort to get a handle on the climate change crisis. Unfortunately, while many advances have been made in LEV/ZEV development, manufacturers have been slow to move away from ICVs. Furthermore, they are allocating the limited stock of LEVs/ZEVs to states - and countries - where they are needed to meet regulations. According to "Virginia Drives Electric 2020", a report released by Generation 180 (https://generation180.org/virginia-drives-electric-2020-download-page/), 53% of Virginians are likely to consider an electric vehicle (EV) for their next car, but they are faced with limited choices when the time comes to shop for one. As I shopped for an EV in the last few months, I found that despite living within walking distance of multiple car dealers, the only EV available to test drive at any of them was a $120,000+ Porsche Taycan - hardly the affordable family car we need - and I would have to go to Maryland to find some of the models we were interested in. "Virginia Drives Electric 2020" found that the lack of a LEV/ZEV program like the one laid out in HB 1965 and other related policies, such as the incentives established in HB 1979, has led to 44-54% lower EV inventory in Virginia cities than in comparable cities in Maryland, and seven to ten times higher availabilty of major models like the Hyundai Kona EV in Maryland. The first available stock of the new VW ID.4 electric SUV was redirected to Europe (https://www.autonews.com/future-product/vw-id4-us-launch-slips-q1) to meet similar restrictions there. The adoption of HB 1965's LEV/ZEV program will encourage manufacturers to send more EV stock to our dealers, which will in turn help to accelerate LEV/ZEV adoption among Virginians, while keeping that economic activity in Virginia. The switch in the auto market to LEV/ZEVs is starting to accelerate, and currently Virginia is missing out on the health, environmental and economic benefits of participating in that movement. Please help our state step forward and meet this moment.

Last Name: Shutler Organization: Virginia Grassroots Coalition Locality: Arlington

On behalf of the Virginia Grassroots Organization, a coalition of over 50 Indivisible, Swing Left, Huddles and other groups throughout Virginia, I ask the Committee to pass the Clean Car Standards bill (HB1965) which directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement a low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program beginning with vehicle model year 2025. This is one of our Coalition's top priority bills for the 2021 session. The Clean Cars bill is critical to combat CO2 emissions and other pollutants, expand consumer choice, and improve public health. Climate Change. Transportation produces 48% of CO2 emissions in VA, and 70% of that fraction is from personal vehicles (Energy Information Administration, Table 4; EPA National Emissions Inventory). By contrast, the electricity to power an EV in Virginia emits less than 30% of the CO2 emitted by an equivalent gasoline car (Department of Energy study). Adoption of the Clean Car standards is projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by almost 3 million metric tons by 2040, greatly helping Virginia meet its climate goals. Public Health. Transportation causes almost half of Virginia’s CO2 emissions and particulate pollution that exacerbates asthma and other health problems particularly for low-income communities living in urban areas. And the American Lung Association found that in Virginia alone, the transition to zero-emission vehicles could, by 2050, save more than $1.3 billion in health costs every year, including those associated with premature deaths, asthma attacks and lost workdays. Consumer choice. Fourteen states and the District of Columbia have already adopted Clean Car standards. Because Clean Car standards mandate that manufacturers provide more zero emission and low emission vehicles to states that have adopted those standards, "Clean Car States" get preferential allocation of electric vehicles (EVs). To be clear, without Clean Car standards, Virginia would have only limited of access to many new EVs coming on line including the popular Ford F-150 truck, mustang, and VW models. Virginian's should have the ability to buy these cars in our own state. Timing. If enacted this session, this bill would not become "operational" until model year 2025. The Clean Air Act has a 2 year waiting period. And it will take an additional 6 months or so to promulgate regulations. Given all of the above, the time to act is NOW. Thank you. Sharon Shutler, Chair Climate & Clean Energy Working Group, Virginia Grassroots Coalition

Last Name: Pien Organization: Loudoun Climate Project, Sierra Club, Great Falls Group, Earth Justice Team Unitarian Universalist Church of Loudoun, VA Grassroots Coalition Locality: Leesburg

Hello members of the House General Laws Committee. My name is Natalie Pien, from Leesburg, VA. I am the current President of the Loudoun Climate Project as well as a member of Earth Rise Indivisible with members across the Commonwealth. I also co-chair the Earth Justice Team at my church. I am also a member of the Virginia Grassroots Coalition, an organization with 10,000 members. Background/Problem Today, automobile dealers in Virginia have limited supply of plug-in hybrid and electric vehicles, EVs. That makes it difficult for Virginians to test drive these cars. When my husband and I were shopping for our plug-in hybrid Chevy Volt, we had to wait for one to be sent from Maryland. In addition, cars with the lowest sticker price are not sent to Virginia. Did you know that: transportation is the single largest source of climate changing greenhouse gas emissions; and private vehicles are responsible for 70% of it? Transportation emissions cause 3,000 premature deaths, 230,000 child asthma attacks, 110 strokes, and 360,000 lost workdays. Solution/details HB 1965 will: • empower Virginia auto dealers to compete with out-of-state dealers by receiving enough EVs to meet demand. When my husband and I bought our Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid, we had to wait for a car to be sent from Maryland. • expand consumer choice. More than half of Virginians would consider buying an EV for their next car. Already in the U.S., there are over 40 EV models available ranging from trucks to SUVs to mini-vans and even Hummers! • Improve public health and, when the transition to EVs is made, save $1.3 billion in health care costs every year. • Combat climate change since 70% of transportation greenhouse gas emissions comes from personal vehicles. This legislation is directed at auto manufacturers to help make Virginia a cleaner, healthier, and more prosperous state. There is no fiscal impact to Virginia or Virginians. Auto dealers can still sell gas powered vehicles. My Ask: I urge you to support HB 1965. Please let me know if you have any questions. My affiliated organizations and I count on your support.

Last Name: Haines Locality: VIENNA

Virginians who evaluate the next vehicle they intend to purchase using tools such as that shared recently in the New York Times, comparing the emissions vs. cost to own (see https://www.carboncounter.com/) will see that there are many many EV models that fit our needs, but are simply unavailable in Virginia. Get those models actually in the showrooms for Virginians to test drive and the demand will surge. Please vote YES on HB1965.

Last Name: Byer Organization: Virginia Grassroots Coalition Locality: Arlington

As a college student majoring in Chemical and Environmental Engineering, air pollution is not a subject I take lightly. I ask that the Committee passes the Clean Car Standards Bill (HB1965) in order to direct the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement a low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program for motor vehicles with a model year of 2025 and later. Were you aware that transportation causes almost half of Virginia’s CO2 emissions, and particulate pollution that exacerbates asthma and other health problems, particularly for those living near major roads, such as many people in low-income communities or those of color? Adopting Clean Car Standards under HB 1965 would expand consumer choice, improve public health, combat climate change AND save consumers money. Fourteen states and the District of Columbia have already adopted Clean Car standards. “Clean Car” states get preferential allocation of electric vehicles (EVs) from many auto manufacturers. Virginia has fewer EVs available than it would if it adopted HB 1965. Keep in mind that the transition to zero-emission vehicles could, by 2050, save more than $1.3 billion in health costs every year. This will especially benefit the low-income communities and communities of color that are disproportionately impacted by transportation emissions. Additionally, adopting Clean Car standards are projected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by almost 3 million metric tons by 2040, greatly helping Virginia meet its climate goals. I hope you keep these essential facts in mind when you meet to make your decision.

Last Name: Nawaz Organization: Virginia Democracy Forward Locality: McLean

Dear Delegate, I’m writing to ask you to support HB 1965. This bill directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement a low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program for motor vehicles with a model year of 2025 and later. This bill will bring several benefits to Virginia, namely: • Improve Public Health: Virginia could save more than $1.3 billion in health costs every year by 2050 by transitioning to electric vehicles, including costs associated with premature deaths, asthma attacks and lost workdays (according to American Lung Association and Harvard School of Public Health). This will especially benefit the low-income communities and communities of color that are disproportionately impacted by transportation emissions. • Combat Climate Change: In order to tackle climate change, transportation needs to be addressed, since that sector produces 48% of CO2 emissions in VA; 70% of that is from personal vehicles (according to the US DOE’s Energy Information Administration and the US Environmental Protection Agency). The electricity to power an EV in Virginia emits less than 30% of the CO2 emitted by an equivalent gasoline car (US Department of Energy). Adopting Clean Car standards are projected to reduce GHGs by almost 3 million metric tons by 2040, greatly helping Virginia meet its climate goals. • Save Consumers Money: As an EV owner, I can confirm that EVs cost much less to fuel, maintain and repair – estimated to be $6,000 to $10,000 over its lifetime (Consumer Reports). And savings will increase as EVs approach initial cost parity with conventional vehicles (International Council on Clean Transportation). Please support HB1965. Thank you for your time and consideration.

Last Name: Fox Organization: myself Locality: Alexandria

I write to you today in support of HB 1965 “Advanced Clean Car Standards.” This directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to promulgate (starting with 2025 model year): (1) Low-Emission Vehicle (LEV) Standards requiring car manufacturers to limit the average emissions from the fleet of cars they sell; this emission standard will become more stringent over time and (2) Zero-Emission Vehicle (ZEV) Standards requiring car manufacturers to sell a certain percentage of EVs or buy credits from other manufacturers who sell EVs in Virginia; this percentage will increase over time. There are few bills you will consider this session with as much impact as this one: considering that transportation causes half of Virginia’s CO2 emissions, this bill has the potential to significantly reduce emissions from the transportation sector. If VA does not sign up for this higher manufacturing standard, these highly desired vehicles will come to more than a dozen other “Clean Car” states before us, such as Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Washington, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware (and D.C.) (As a former Prius owner, who sees Teslas on the road every day in Alexandria and Fairfax County, I know how in demand EV cars are. If the cars are available, they will sell; and that’s good for the economy.) Huge bonus: the state will not have to pay for this bill, making VA a "Clean Car state." It will not raise people's taxes or add to the budget under pressure from the pandemic. (To the concern asking whether Virginia will have enough charging stations, an answer to that is the bill takes effect in a few years, not right away; and with the number of charging stations growing all the time, there is confidence that the infrastructure is going to be in place by the time the bill goes into effect. Private industry is stepping up to provide the infrastructure. I don't think the number of charging stations on the roads today is a reason not to support this bill.) Abby Fox Alexandria, VA

Last Name: Kent Locality: Great Falls

I urge the committee to favorably report HB 1965 for consideration by the full House of Delegates. Almost half of the CO2 emissions in Virginia are generated by the transportation sector, and nearly three-quarters of that amount comes from personal vehicles, according to the US Energy Information Administration. These vehicles also emit particulate pollution that exacerbates asthma and other health problems, particularly for those living near major roads. We can make a significant reduction in both by enacting Clean Car Standards (as 14 other states have done) because it will make electric vehicles more available in Virginia. One of the main benefits is greater consumer choice for Virginians. Manufacturers prioritize sending electric cars to Clean Car states like Maryland making it difficult for dealers to obtain them. Research surveys have verified the anecdotal stories about customers seeing limited or no electric cars on dealer lots in Virginia. Giving Virginia auto dealers more access to EVs will level the playing field, so they can better compete with out-of-state dealers and the Direct Sales companies like Tesla, Lucid, and Rivian. In addition, and even more importantly, the movement toward electric cars will help improve the public health of Virginians, reduce particulate pollution, and help the state meet its overall emission reduction goals.

Last Name: Clewett Organization: Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions Locality: Fairfax County

Faith Alliance for Climate Solutions urges the Committee to pass the Clean Car Standards bill, HB 1965, so Virginia can join 14 other states and the District of Columbia in combatting the climate crisis, improving public health, and ensuring consumers have access to the widest selection of electric vehicles. Virginia consumers are currently second-class citizens. When my wife and I were recently looking for a new car, we were interested in an all-electric Kia Niro – but it turns out Kia only ships those cars to Clean Car states like Maryland. The manager of our local dealership said he had begged Kia to send him EVs, to no avail. HB 1965 will help Virginia dealerships compete better, and improve consumer choice. To build the clean energy economy – and achieve the widespread economic, equity, health, and environmental benefits that flow from it – requires two things: de-carbonizing electricity generation (now underway thanks to the 2020 adoption of the Virginia Clean Economy Act), and electrifying everything. Accelerating the shift to electric vehicles is a key part of this strategy, and it needs to start now. Transportation causes almost half of Virginia’s CO2 emissions (and harmful particulate emissions that exacerbate health problems, particularly in communities near major roads), and almost three quarters of those emissions are from personal vehicles. Wider use of EVs can help solve this problem, since the electricity to power an EV in Virginia emits less than 30% of the CO2 emitted by an equivalent gasoline car – and this advantage will get even better as electricity generation becomes cleaner. To be sure, there will be opposition to Clean Car legislation from lobbyists for the status quo, who always urge delay – for more studies, or to see what the Biden Administration may do, or to see what California might do in the year 2035! But in fact, we know all we need to know to move forward right now. And since the provisions of HB 1965 won’t take effect until the 2025 model year, there's plenty of time to address any lingering concerns about incentives, further expansion of charging infrastructure, etc. It's important to note that demand for EVs is strong already. More than half of Virginians say they would consider an EV for their next car, and they should be able to buy those EVs in Virginia. In fact, demand for EVs in Hampton Roads and Northern Virginia alone is already enough to account for all the EVs that manufacturers would be called on to sell under Clean Car legislation. Many auto dealerships want to be able to meet that demand, regardless of what the Virginia Automobile Dealers Association might say. Demand will increase even further if Del. Reid’s EV Rebate bill, HB 1979, is adopted. Demand is strong because EVs are highly desirable – they’re fun to drive, with instant response, and according to Consumer Reports, an EV will save its owner $6,000 to $10,000 over its lifetime because EVs are cheaper to fuel, to maintain, and to repair. And they will get even more popular over the next several years as their initial cost reaches parity with, and then undercuts, that of conventional cars. Clean Car legislation will make Virginia a cleaner, healthier and more prosperous state, that is even more attractive to families and to the businesses that will lead Virginia into the future. The time to act is now. Thank you, John Clewett

Last Name: Najarian Organization: VA Grassroots Coalition and VA Democracy Forward (VADF) Locality: McLean

I ask the Committee to pass the Clean Car Standards bill (HB1965) which directs the State Air Pollution Control Board to implement a low-emissions and zero-emissions vehicle program for motor vehicles with a model year of 2025 and later. I believe this bill is critical to the Commonwealth to help achieve the lowering of CO2 emissions and other pollutants, expand consumer choice, and improve public health. The electrification of transportation can reduced the almost half of Virginia’s CO2 emissions currently caused by vehicles, and the particulate pollution that exacerbates asthma and other health problems, particularly for those living near major roads, such as many people in low-income communities or those of color. This is an issue of moving VA toward a clean energy economy in a just and equitable fashion. The nation and world is moving in this direction, and VA should be a the forefront of this effort. Fourteen states and the District of Columbia have already adopted Clean Car standards. “Clean Car” states get preferential allocation of electric vehicles (EVs) from many auto manufacturers. Virginia has fewer EVs available than it would if it adopted HB 1965. With this legislation there is no down side. It opens up a market that is emerging, that fits with our climate goals in the state, and keeps VA in step with states and municipalities that understand and embrace the need to electrify transport. The longer VA delays, the more we need to play catch up. We want a state that attracts businesses and employees that look for environments that are current with science, climate resilience needs, and a future that offers progress rather than environmental disaster. I trust that the committee will move this bill to a full House of Delegates vote. Thank you for your attention to my testimony.

Last Name: LeMenestrel Locality: Mc Lean

My wife and I were recently in the market to buy a new car, and we decided that we would buy an electric or plug-in hybrid car to do our share in addressing the climate crisis. We had a limited budget but were pleasantly surprised to find that there were several options with price in line with gas-powered cars, not to mention the savings we would realize by not paying for gas in future years. We settled for an Ioniq Plug-in Hybrid, which after the federal tax rebate would come to less than $20K. Unfortunately, at that point, we discovered that very few dealers in Northern Virginia where we are located were carrying this model, and that the manufacturer incentives were $3,000 less in Virginia than they were in Maryland. After some research online, we found that this was due to Virginia not being part of the ZEV/LEV states coalition – unlike Maryland. We ended up buying the car in Maryland. This was a minor inconvenience being in closeby Northern Virginia – but this would not have been an option if we had been in other areas of the state.

Last Name: Bushnell Locality: Virginia Beach

I am asking for your support of HB1965 in order to ensure a cleaner, healthier future for Virginia. Transportation is the leading source of carbon pollution in Virginia, harming our health and our environment. The bill calls for adopting Clean Car Standards beginning with Model Year 2025. This is plenty of time for manufacturers to comply and many, thankfully, have realized that this is the future and have already begun to develop the technology needed to comply. I am strongly in favor of the Zero Emissions Vehicle component which requires manufacturers to deliver more electric vehicles for sale in Virginia. We purchased a Chevy Bolt in 2019 and we love it! However, we were disappointed and frustrated in our experience of shopping for an electric vehicle in Virginia, as our options were limited. Some of the cars we were interested in were not available in Virginia. I encourage you to act as leaders to bring Virginia into the 21st century.

Last Name: Ware Organization: N/a Locality: Tappahannock

As a citizen who lives in the state and on the Rappahannock river and has seen the impact of poor stewardship, I ask that the General Assembly support these bills.

HB2030 - Neonicotinoid pesticides; application in residentially zoned outdoor areas, civil penalty.
Last Name: Reichbauer Locality: Richmond

We need to protect these precious pollinators! Local government should be able to fine people/businesses who are poisoning the bee population.

Last Name: Long Locality: Richmond

As the assembly convenes at the science museum, this seems like a poetic no-brainer. VA govt needs to do its part to reverse the cataclysmic damage done to our pollinators. Not merely for love of nature, but for the good of our own communities

Last Name: Graessle Locality: Reston

Neonicotinoids are killing bees.

Last Name: Starkey Locality: Arlington

Pollinators, and bees especially, are vital for human food production, and for a healthy and stable ecosystem. The science is undeniable, Neonicotinoid pesticides are decimating our pollinator populations. Virginia must act now to help protect our pollinators before it is too late. Stand up to industry pressure and allow local communities ban these toxic pesticides now.

Last Name: Toher Organization: Beyond Pesticides Locality: Arlington

Beyond Pesticides' Supplemental Written Comments: On behalf of members and supporters in Virginia, Beyond Pesticides urges the committee to pass a strong HB2030 that protects Virginia’s declining pollinator populations from neonicotinoids (neonics) and other bee-toxic pesticides. We encourage inclusion of the bill’s original language allowing localities to enact restrictions. This will permit localities to protect unique ecological sites, such as wetlands, pollinator gardens, and monarch waystations from toxic pesticide exposure. Dangers of Neonics to Pollinators: • Honey bees and other pollinators account for 1 in 3 bites of food, but recent science shows these beneficial species are under threat from the use of systemic, persistent neonic insecticides. • Studies show these chemicals can be taken up by flowering plants and expressed in the pollen, nectar, and dew droplets honey bees and other pollinators feed on. • Neonics have been shown, even at low levels, to impair foraging, navigation, and learning behavior in bees, as well as suppress their immune system, increasing susceptibility to pathogens and disease. • Research shows neonics can alter feeding behaviors and reduce egg development in bumblebee queens, inhibit pollination skills among bumblebee workers, and reduce overall colony size. • Beekeepers in Virginia lost a reported 41.4% of their honey bee colonies in 2018/19 and 44.2% in 2019/20. This rate is unsustainable. Beekeepers have a challenging time absorbing losses greater than 15% each year; rates in Virginia and the country have averaged over 30% for the last decade. Not Just Bumble and Honey: Systemic Pesticides Harm a Range of Wildlife • Eastern monarch populations have declined by 80% since the 1990s. Research shows neonics are contributing to this decline. • Bird populations have declined by thirty percent since 1970, with losses totaling around 3 billion birds. Studies find systemic pesticides are contributing to songbird die-offs. • White-tailed deer exposed to neonics show higher rates of birth defects and malformations in offspring. • Systemic pesticides pose significant harm to water quality and aquatic organisms. As a result, Health Canada has phased out most neonic uses. EPA Regulation has Failed Virginia’s Pollinators • Many bee-toxic pesticides were first registered by EPA under a process known as "conditional registration," which has been criticized by the GAO for its unreliability. • EPA actions aimed at protecting pollinators have not adequately addressed the pollinator crisis. While other international regulatory agencies, including Health Canada and the European Food Safety Authority, have already enacted bans on neonics, EPA’s efforts have been limited to minor changes to certain pesticide labels. Growing Reforms at the State and Local Level: • The states of Connecticut, Maryland, and Vermont have all passed laws restricting consumer use of bee-toxic neonics in favor of alternative products and practices. • Over 150 communities throughout the United States have passed policies that restrict the use of bee-toxic pesticides. • HB2030 brings Virginia in line with the latest science on pesticide hazards, and takes an important step forward in reversing pollinator declines in the state. We urge passage of a strong HB2030 and remain available for any questions on this important issue.

Last Name: Bauhan Organization: Virginia Poultry Federation Locality: Harrisonburg

Virginia Poultry Federation respectfully asks that you not move forward with HB 2030. This bill imposes certain requirements for use of a neonicotinoid pesticide. This pesticide is used in crop production and also in products to control darkling beetles in poultry houses, a pest which can create significant and costly problems for poultry farmers. While the substitute is an improvement over the introduced bill, such products are appropriately regulated at the federal level, where they can be properly vetted based on scientific protocols.

Last Name: Ferree Locality: Fairfax County

I wanted to share an experience my wife and I had encountering mosquito fogging this past summer. We were in our neighbors backyard doing maintenance to our fence when we noticed that the neighbors yard behind was being fogged (presumably for mosquitos). The gentleman was wearing a respirator, goggles, long pants, and long sleeves. As we saw the fog drift towards us we started yelling at him to stop and that there were bees behind the fence. He noticed us and quickly left. My wife and I were then immediately affected by the fog that reached us, causing us to cough and gasp for air. We then retreated back to our house and recovered. My bees survived this incident, probably due to the six foot fence not allowing most of the fog to reach them. Thank you. John E Ferree

Last Name: Coron Organization: Virginia Pest Management Association Locality: Stafford County

Virginia Pest Management Association (VPMA) Comments on HB 2030 Established in 1948, the Virginia Pest Management Association has been serving the information and business needs of Virginia's pest management professionals for over 70 years. The pest management services provided by our members in Virginia help to protect the health and property of every citizen of the Commonwealth by insuring that homes, restaurants, hospitals, office buildings, and other public spaces are pest free. The professional structural pest control industry and our certified commercial applicators and registered technicians use neonicotinoid pesticides in, on, and around structures to protect public health and property. Our industry professionally manages structural pests with neonicotinoids such as ants, bed bugs, carpenter ants, cockroaches, flies, termites, and many others. We appreciate the opportunity to share our views on HB 2030. It is known that structural pest control uses of neonicotinoid pesticides are unlikely to pose a threat to pollinators, as a recent Cornell University study on neonicotinoid pesticides illustrates: “Negligible risk to pollinators from household pest control and antiparasitic uses… Such applications are unlikely to lead to substantial exposure for insect pollinators” (1). VPMA acknowledges the importance of pollinator health, applauds Delegate Krizek for his dedication to protect pollinators, and drafting a bill that allows for the professional structural pest control industry to protect public health and property with neonicotinoids. VPMA stresses the impact that the structural pest management industry has on pollinators is nominal. The content in HB 2030 reflects this reality. Pesticide risks to pollinators are not only focused on the toxicity of a chemical, but also the potential for exposure. Structural pest control is very unlikely to lead to exposure. Similarly, exterior treatments applied to the structure and other areas around the structure are also unlikely to result in significant exposure. VPMA members support, teach, and implement Best Management Practices (BMPs) developed by the National Pest Management Association, and cited in the Virginia Pollinator Protection Plan (2). We are pleased to see that local governments do not have the ability to regulate pesticides in this amended version of the bill. Local governments regulating pesticides complicates enforcement matters for pest management professionals that operate in many local government jurisdictions and unfettered municipal pesticide bans would create an inability to control disease vector pests that pose human health threats. (3) We support strong state regulation from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS), as HB 2030 in its amended form maintains this. In conclusion, we are supportive of provisions in HB 2030 that allow for the structural pest control industry to continue protecting public health and property with neonicotinoids. Sincerely, Andrea Coron Executive Director Virginia Pest Management Association 1) https://pollinator.cals.cornell.edu/pollinator-research-cornell/neonicotinoid-report/ 2) http://www.vdacs.virginia.gov/plant-industry-services-pollinator-protection-plan.shtml 3) https://www.cga.ct.gov/2019/ENVdata/Tmy/2019SB-00076-R000318-Dykes,%20Katherine,%20Commissioner-Department%20of%20Energy%20and%20Environmental-TMY.PDF

Last Name: Vassey Organization: Virginia Manufacturers Association Locality: Richmond

The VMA and Virginia Chemistry Council (VCC) appreciate Delegate Krizek introducing a substitute to HB2030 that exempts wood and plastic applications. We are also appreciative of the removal of the delegation of regulatory authority to local government. With these amendments in the final bill, the VMA and VCC are neutral.

Last Name: Miller Organization: Virginia Grain Producers Association Locality: Henrico

The Virginia Grain Producers Association is opposed to Delegate Krizek’s proposed bill, HB 2030. VGPA supports the long-established, rigorous, and science-based pesticide registration review process established under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). Unlike other federal environmental statutes, FIFRA requires EPA to engage in a risk-benefit analysis in its regulation of pesticides. A thorough and holistic approach that relies on sound science and robust data ensures that risk conclusions are as closely tied to real-world conditions as practicably possible. FIFRA requires that EPA ensure that pesticides registered for use in the U.S. do not pose unreasonable adverse effect on man and the environment. FIFRA requires that EPA engage in risk-benefit balancing that weighs potential risk against the economic and society benefits of pesticide use. The unreasonable adverse effects standard does not require an elimination of any and all risk, and will mean that some small fraction of non-target insects, including pollinators, may be harmed. Overall EPA’s risk assessments for neonicotinoids indicate that widespread adoption of these products do not pose a significant risk to pollinator health. In particular, EPA has not found seed treatment with neonicotinoid products of significant risk.

Last Name: Miller Locality: Clifton

The science is still conflicted. From Cornell: https://pollinator.cals.cornell.edu/threats-wild-and-managed-bees/pesticides/neonicotinoids/ "Overall, the majority of laboratory and semi-field research demonstrates neonicotinoids can be harmful to honey bees; however, the majority of field studies find only limited or no effects on honey bees." Best to leave regulation to the experts at VDACS and EPA. Local governments have no ability to scientifically make these decisions.

Last Name: Etro Organization: Turf-Vu Locality: Prince William

The well-meaning notification process will cause an expensive burden on the businesses and persons applying a neonicotinoid product and it will have no impact on the environment and pollinators that it supposes to protect. It will be a nuisance to all involved because upon receipt of the notice there are no actions that can be taken except to shelter all pollinators and restrict their access to the pollen sources inside the ½ mile danger zone for an amount of time, unspecified by HB 2030. It is an impossible set of tasks and it has no relationship to the potential dispersion of the neonicotinoid product. Businesses involved in the application of pesticides are trained and licensed in their use. Fundamental to applying any neonicotinoid product is to avoid flowering plants, apply it when pollinators are least active, and when the wind is calm so as to prevent drift. The Commonwealth of Virginia likely set the responsibility to regulate pesticides and their use in the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to prevent well-meaning persons from implementing nescience based regulations that would have no impact on the intended purpose of the regulation. Leave responsibility to regulate pesticides and their use in the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

Last Name: Garland Organization: Friends of Accotink Creek Locality: Vienna

Friends of Accotink Creek supports HB 2030 regulating neonicotinoid pesticides. Landscaping companies will say their products are safe for bees and other non-mosquito insects. Science tells another story. As regards honey bees, the workers in many tests will continue to fly and forage for a while, but queen bees are devastated by neonics thiamethoxam and clothianidin. "The queen, as the sole egg-layer and the primary source of colony cohesion, is the most important individual in the colony; without her the colony will eventually fail." https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/10/151013103118.htm Of course, neonics afffect the whole hive. They do not obliterate hive outright, but kill it over extended periods of time. https://www.pbs.org/newshour/science/neonicotinoid-pesticides-slowly-killing-bees Other studies have shown that queen bumble bees (non-honey bees) also fare very badly with neonic pesticides. http://cues.cfans.umn.edu/old/pollinators/pdf-BBcolony/2012Whitehorn.pdf Neonicotinoid pesticides (neonics) are less toxic to vertebrates than common older insecticides, but they are still harmful. They persist in the soil, leach into the environment, and harm pollinators, including honeybees and our native bees. This bill aims to protect pollinators in our community from outdoor spray, especially hives kept by Virginia suburban beekeepers. This bill addresses only outdoor spray, not indoor treatments for pests like bed bugs and roaches, toward which neonicotinoids are most effective. While the bill does not ban the sale, use, and distribution of neonics throughout the state, it does authorize localities to prohibit the sale of all, or certain neonics, and other pesticides deemed to be harmful to pollinators. It also allows localities to regulate or prohibit outdoor use in areas zoned for residential, business, commercial, or industrial use. This is a major progress. That means we may write to our town councils and demand an end to neonic spraying. Those of us with bee hives or pollinator/butterfly gardens will be very pleased. For jurisdictions who choose not to regulate neonics, the bill does mandate that everyone within a ½ mile of the neonic application get a 72-hour warning. This offers a form of limited protection. Homeowners with pollinator gardens or bee hives will have time to throw tarps or sheets over the area they need to shield from these poisons. Thank you, Delegate Krizek, for sponsoring this measure.

Last Name: Garland Organization: Friends of Accotink Creek Locality: vienna

Friends of Accotink Creek support HB 1902, the ban on expanded polystyrene food and drink containers. 1)EPS containers can leach harmful chemicals into food and drinks: EPS contains styrene, a lab animal carcinogen and possible human carcinogen and neurotoxin. Styrene can migrate from polystyrene containers into food and drink when heated, or in contact with fatty or acidic foods. Low-income communities often lack access to grocery stores and are forced to rely on fast food options, which are often stored in EPS containers. 2) The EPS manufacturing process can harm the health of factory workers: Workers are exposed to many toxic chemicals including Styrene, Toluene, Xylene, Acetone, Methyl Chloride, and Methyl Ketone. 3) The EPS manufacturing process pollutes the air: All blowing agents currently used in EPS manufacture pose dangers to the environment. The CFCs damage the ozone layer. The blowing agent pentane creates earth-level smog and has already been restricted in some regions for air quality reasons. 4) EPS is too expensive to recycle: The NY City Dept of Sanitation recently determined that that it is not economically viable to recycle EPS foam food containers. 5) EPS is not biodegradable, it litters our parks and streams: Polystyrene containers break into smaller pieces, creating trash that is harder to collect and remove. After the CA cities of Santa Cruz and Pacific Grove banned EPS foam food containers, EPS litter on local beaches decreased up to 71%. EPS containers are bad news, the sooner they are banned the better. Thank you, Delegate Carr, for introducing this bill.

Last Name: Curling Organization: Ordinary Citizens avoiding RoadRage Locality: HamptonRoads area

EPA & VDACS already regulate pesticide industry; Virginia localities don't have enough regulations without adding more affecting the Landscape &Turfgrass businesses? Rather, how about a bill prohibiting motorists from driving with their dog in their laps? Or a bill requiring an annual driver's test for everyone over 80 years old? Do something constructive!

Last Name: Taylor Organization: Concerned citizen Locality: Henrico

RE: HR 2030 -- relating to neonicotinoid pesticides; local regulation and notice; penalty. Date: January 19, 2021 Please vote NO on HR 2030 HR 2030 was written to protect citizens, environment and insects, especially bees from the effects of this pesticide. HR 2030 has 2 major issues 1. The ability of notify every member of the public within ½ mile of the treatment site cannot be accomplished. 2. State Law does not allow for localities to write their own regulations on this issue. Do we need HR 2030? There is a lot of regulations effecting these products from EPA. The Federal Government has invested in a lot of research as to the best way to handle the situation. I cannot tell the true reason for this bill. If it is to protect the bee population or to follow the EU’s regulation, there are a better ways. Also, is it needed? Since the requirement of certified applicators, the amount of exposure to this type of chemical is reduced despite increased use. There are better ways of approaching this issue without negative effect on another envirnomental issue

Last Name: Sheetz Organization: VA Turfgrass Council Locality: Chesterfield

Many bills brought to committee often deserve a second look. Many people in our state/country today see companies spraying an immediately think all is bad. Please ask professionals in their respected fields before making brash bill decisions because a few constituents believe in "more legislation." In our profession, we are heavily regulated by VDACS and go through licensure and recertification courses. We are NOT out just spraying without a purpose and every chemical is measured and calibrated carefully. I would like to bring up the fact that many homeowners are able to get their hands on many of these chemicals on-line. Are these homeowners trained to apply these chemicals? The answer is NO! Just like homeowners that can go to a box store an apply fertilizer at whatever rate they wish, not understanding runoff or leaching. I 100% disagree with this bill because it will jeopardize the green industry. Do you as a state representative contact every one within a 1/2 radius every time you go to work? Can these chemicals cause damaged if not used correctly? Yes, but the industry you are hurting are the people that understand chemicals, are stewarts for the enviroment, and know the risks of not applying insecticides at the right time.

Last Name: Buffey Organization: Va Turfgrass council Locality: Henrico

2030: If this passes you will cause great expense to the landscape contractors in the state and probably cause people to lose their jobs. You have regulated us enough. Please let it go and let us do our job that we have been trained for.

Last Name: Burbank Locality: Virginia beach

GET RID OF ANY/all polystyrene containers. No good for the environment on the production OR usage of said items. NEONICOTINOIDS are killing pollinators by the billions. STOP USAGE OF ALL NEONICOTINOIDS, period!! Senior citizens have been paying exorbitant fees/taxes in VB; the very least you can do is let us park for free. Nit only in parks, but all public parking facilities in Va. Beach!! BALLOONS KILL ANIMALS. Intentional balloon release is ridiculous, and should not be allowed. Proven to kill hundreds (if not thousands) of animals/sea life per year. Production of balloon is poison to our ecosystem; release of them is folly and unnecessary. They take WAYYYY TOO LONG TO DECOMPOSE. They pollute waterways and forests. Outlaw the release of ANY balloons.

Last Name: Calvert Organization: Virginia Conservation Network Locality: Charlottesville

Virginia Conservation Network (VCN) stands in support of HB 1750 & HB 2030. We hope that the subcommittee members will support each of these pieces of legislation.

Last Name: Ware Organization: N/a Locality: Tappahannock

As a citizen who lives in the state and on the Rappahannock river and has seen the impact of poor stewardship, I ask that the General Assembly support these bills.

HB2067 - Solar facilities; permit by rule.
Last Name: Bent Organization: ENGIE Locality: Chicago, IL

ENGIE North America Inc., (“ENGIE”) respectfully submits the following comments OPPOSING House Bill 2067 (“HB 2067”), which would lower the maximum generation capacity of a solar energy facility to qualify for a permit-by-rule (PBR) from 150 megawatts to 50 megawatts. ENGIE is the world’s largest provider of energy and energy-efficiency services and has a significant Virginia presence, including a portfolio of five grid-scale solar projects. Two of these projects are currently under construction and the remaining three are in late-stage development. The Virginia DEQ’s PBR process is a strict and sophisticated tool used to streamline project development while still adequately considering all environmental, archaeological, and cultural impacts a project may have. This process is predictable, efficient, and transparent – it reduces administrative costs, while allowing the public and other stakeholders ample opportunities to provide input. Furthermore, the DEQ is not required to issue a PBR for all projects under 150 MW – projects requiring more scrutiny are able to undergo additional reviews if deemed necessary by DEQ. The PBR process allows solar project developers to work collaboratively and successfully with local and state permitting agencies to address any concerns and incorporate specific requests. Reducing the threshold to 50 MW would result in additional costs, time, and uncertainty to solar project development – which ultimately increases the price that Virginia customers pay for energy. Virginia set the stage for the clean energy transition last year when the Legislature passed the Virginia Clean Economy Act (VCEA). Ultimately, the VCEA aims to lower energy costs for all ratepayers, increase grid resiliency and reliability, create new jobs, and stimulate economic investment. HB 2067 makes these goals much harder to accomplish.

Last Name: Dubon Organization: BayWa r.e. Solar Projects LLC Locality: Irvine

On behalf of BayWa r.e., a leading renewable energy developer, service supplier, distributor and energy solutions provider, we STRONGLY OPPOSE HB 2067. Lowering the maximum generation eligible for PBR from 150 to 50 MW would have negative consequences for the deployment of solar power for the State of Virginia. This would increase the cost and timing of developing solar in Virginia, and hurt businesses that intend to invest in the State. Again, we STRONGLY OPPOSE HB 2067. Thank you for your time and consideration on this matter.

Last Name: Posey Locality: Fairfax County

If this bill passes it would delay the development of solar projects already in the works by changing the rules on them and forcing them to comply with an overly strict process - the processes in place currently are very rigorous and more than sufficient. This would have a direct effect on jobs and investments in Virginia communities. By changing the rules mid-stream it would also make it harder for the state of Virginia to meet its Clean Economy Act goals that were set last year.

Last Name: Martin Organization: Martin Energy LLC Locality: St. Paul, VA

I am writing to oppose shrinking the PBR process from 150 MW to 50 MW. This Bill would delay approvals of solar projects by forcing developers to apply for a CPCN with the VA SCC. This approach would delay economic benefits of construction jobs and economic benefits to Counties and add more bureaucratic burden to the permitting process. Solar companies may choose to avoid the CPCN altogether, leading to the development of more projects at smaller sizes. This reduction in economy of scale would drive costs up and be bad for the ratepayers of the Commonwealth. Sincerely, James K. Martin, President, Martin Energy LLC

Last Name: Hodsoll Organization: SolUnesco, LLC Locality: Loudoun County, Virginia

I am one of the founders and the CEO of SolUnesco. On behalf of my company and employees we oppose HB 2067. We are a Virginia company founded in 2015 that employs Virginians and our projects represents several billion in investment in rural areas. Further, we spearheaded the solar workforce development program in partnership with Southside Community College. We have fourteen projects in eleven counties. HB 2067 will slow economic development throughout the state of Virginia. This is a Bill that is reversing a well-understood process for conducting thorough environmental, cultural and historic due diligence for these projects. In fact, Virginia citizens interests are served when DEQ governs this permitting process given the nature of these projects. A vote for 2067 is a vote against economic development, it is a vote against protecting the interests of all Virginians.

Last Name: McCarty Locality: Suffolk

A change of this magnitude so soon after the Clean Economy Act being passed will significantly impact many projects that are currently in development. We are working tirelessly with localities and communities to establish timelines in an effort to remain transparent throughout these processes and collaborative in every way possible. This will derail these processes and force localities to take a step back to reevaluate our relationships.

Last Name: Maughan Locality: Reston, Virginia

I am a utility scale solar energy developer working for a small, Virginia-based company with several Virginia clean energy projects under active development. I are very excited buy the Clean Energy Economy act that this body put in place last year, but am very concerned about the proposed HB 2067 will severely limit the commonwealth's ability to meet these goals. The CPCN process is FAR more cumbersome to developers than the current DEQ PBR process, without adding any benefit or safeguards. In fact, I would go as far as to say that, for this size project, the CPCN provides less benefit, in terms of project due diligence, than the PBR process. Further, and more concerningly, switching the required processes jeopardizes all projects that mine and other companies currently have in development, along with the substantial investments that we have made in them. These projects are at various stages in a years-long development cycles. Changing the development rules mid-development will severely limit our ability to get them across the goal line, and limit Virginia's ability to meet the goals it has set for itself. Please do not vote in favor of HB 2067.

Last Name: Hillis Organization: SolUnesco LLC Locality: Leesburg

SolUnesco LLC is a utility scale solar developer currently developing several project in Virginia. This bill will slow development of our projects, forcing them to go through the more complex, burdensome, and unnecessary CPCN process at the SCC. We strongly oppose this bill. • This legislation changes the rules in the middle of the game. Developers are working with localities, landowners, and farmers as we speak to develop solar projects. This change in the PBR process would fundamentally disrupt this process for solar projects between 50 MWs and 150 MWs. • Changing the rules in the middle of the game sends the wrong message to clean energy businesses that are trying to work and grow in Virginia, endangering the jobs and investment they bring to the Commonwealth. • Changing these rules will make it harder for Virginia to meet the Clean Economy Act goals it set last year by making it more challenging to deploy affordable, clean solar energy at scale.

Last Name: Maamari Organization: SolUnesco Locality: Falls Church

This legislation changes the rules in the middle of the game. Developers are working with localities, landowners, and farmers as we speak to develop solar projects. This change in the PBR process would fundamentally disrupt this process for solar projects between 50 MWs and 150 MWs. Changing the rules in the middle of the game sends the wrong message to clean energy businesses that are trying to work and grow in Virginia, endangering the jobs and investment they bring to the Commonwealth. Changing these rules will make it harder for Virginia to meet the Clean Economy Act goals it set last year by making it more challenging to deploy affordable, clean solar energy at scale.

Last Name: Entsuah Organization: Virginia Advanced Energy Economy Locality: Richmond, Virginia

Virginia Advanced Energy Economy is in OPPOSITION to HB 2067, The Solar Facilities bill. Virginia’s Developers are currently working with municipalities, landowners, and our agricultural workers to develop solar projects. If this bill was to pass, it would fundamentally change the process for these projects without considering our workers. It would also disrupt the process for solar projects between 50 Megawatts and 150 Megawatts. This bill would send a terrible message to clean energy businesses that are trying to build in Virginia and invest in the Commonwealth. Finally this bill would make it harder for Virginia to meet the goals that were set by the Clean Economy Act that was passed this past year. We urge the committee to deny the passage of this bill.

Last Name: Kraus Organization: SolUnesco Locality: Washington, DC

• This legislation changes the rules in the middle of the game. Developers are working with localities, landowners, and farmers as we speak to develop solar projects. This change in the PBR process would fundamentally disrupt this process for solar projects between 50 MWs and 150 MWs. • Changing the rules in the middle of the game sends the wrong message to clean energy businesses that are trying to work and grow in Virginia, endangering the jobs and investment they bring to the Commonwealth. • Changing these rules will make it harder for Virginia to meet the Clean Economy Act goals it set last year by making it more challenging to deploy affordable, clean solar energy at scale

Last Name: Wofford Organization: Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley Locality: Sperryville

Thank you for the chance to comment. I am Kate Wofford, Executive Director of Alliance for the Shenandoah Valley is a place-based nonprofit working to protect the clean water, family farms, and thriving communities in six Valley counties. We support increased scrutiny of the very large solar applications. We are seeing applications for larger and larger utility-scale solar projects on farmland in the Valley, instead of lots of smaller solar proposals on brownfields, parking lots, rooftops, and marginal lands where most Virginians think they should be prioritized . In general, it's on these very large projects where we are more likely to see negative impacts to water quality, rural character, and prime soils. For that, we believe that increased scrutiny on the larger projects is good public policy. Thank you.

Last Name: Rosales-Cortez Organization: Chesapeake Climate Action Network Locality: Richmond

This bill will hinder the VCEA's ability to meet the goals of developing clean energy in Virginia by bottlenecking solar energy. Specifically: 1) By lowering that cap from 150 MW to 50 MW, this bill will make it harder for Virginia to quickly deploy solar, decarbonize our grid, and meet our VCEA goals 2) Solar projects between 50 MWs and 150 MWs have been approved and are being developed right now - this would disrupt that development process and send the wrong message to clean energy businesses trying to work in Virginia. This bill must not pass if we are to keep our current trajectory in developing clean energy.

Last Name: Staples Locality: Chesapeake

Good Day, I would like you to know that on every trip that I make to various State Forest and the George Washington National Forest. I find several ballons while hiking, hunting or fishing. On my visits to Virginia Beach they are a constant wash up item that I find and dispose of. Please put an end to this needless celebratory practice. The harm to wildlife is terrible. 40 years ago, I watched a whitetail doe pull a balloon from a Mountain Laurel and partially eat it. Imagine how many times that scene has been repeated over the decades since. Thank you.

Last Name: Smucker Organization: Chesapeake Solar and Storage Association (formally known as MDV-SEIA) Locality: Richmond City

CHESSA is in opposition to Delegate Webert's HB 2067, as it would shrink the MW limit on PBR solar projects from 150MWs (current code) to 50MWs, cutting the size of eligible projects by 2/3rds. This policy would work against the Commonwealth's directive by the VCEA and directly prohibit us from successfully achieving Virginia's ambitious clean energy goals. CHESSA supports Delegate Willet's HB 2148, which adds energy storage to the "Permit by Rule" (PBR) program, which will allow battery storage and hybrid (storage + renewables) projects to use DEQ's PBR process for permitting. This model program ensures that projects are permitted safely and quickly and remains a key attraction to solar developers. By expanding and streamlining this process for hybrid and standalone storage projects, the Commonwealth will be able to achieve its clean energy goals laid out by the VCEA while continuing to attract investment and create jobs in Virginia.

HB2074 - Environmental justice; interagency working group.
Last Name: Kidest Gebre Organization: Virginia Interfaith Power & Light Locality: Richmond

I urge you to pass HB 2074. VEJA’s EJ policy declaration alone and current public participation requirements do not provide for the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of Virginians in agencies' environmental decisions and actions. This is demonstrated by the persistent environmental injustices related to the siting of fossil fuel infrastructure, landfills, and other environmentally hazardous activities in environmental justice communities. Thank you!

Last Name: Shepherd Organization: NRDC Locality: Richmond

On behalf of our nearly 10,000 paying members all across the Commonwealth, NRDC supports this important equity reform.

Last Name: Williams Organization: Green New Deal Virginia Locality: Richmond

Mr Chairman and members of the Subcommittee, SUPPORT Delegate Simond’s HB 2074 Omnibus Environmental Justice Bill. HB 2074 strengthens the Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020 which established the promotion of environmental justice as the official policy of the Commonwealth. Although Virginia now has a basic EJ policy, DEQ still needs the guidance, regulations, trainings, and tools necessary to ensure EJ is carried out and to close historic structural gaps in their public engagement, program administration, permitting, regulation development, and regulatory enforcement. This Bill authorizes agencies when making environmental-related decisions to adopt policies designed to mitigate disproportionately adverse and cumulative environmental impacts on environmental justice communities at the state and local level over the next two years. HB 2074’s local government requirements support DEQ Director David Paylor's commitment, after the completion of VDEQ’s 18-month study in October, “to coordinate with local and state government agencies to ensure alignment with environmental justice policies”. On behalf of our diverse coalition’s 80 grassroots partner organizations, and their members from across the commonwealth, we hope you will support this Bill and vote to give the Department of Environmental Quality the tools necessary and clear authority to deny permits, based on environmental justice impacts and cumulative impacts. This authority is critical to any effort to improve DEQ's consideration of environmental justice in their environmental permitting processes. Thank you for your consideration.

Last Name: Esparza Locality: Richmond

Strengthen Environmental Justice this year! Support HB 2074 which embed environmental justice strategies in state agencies. It's time for the state of Virginia to consider EJ when making decisions that impact us!

Last Name: Jemaine Organization: CCAN Action Fund Locality: glen allen

The Omnibus Environmental Justice Bill builds on the Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020 which established the promotion of environmental justice as the official policy of the Commonwealth. The Bill authorizes agencies when making environmental-related decisions to adopt policies designed to mitigate disproportionately adverse and cumulative environmental impacts on environmental justice communities at the state and local level over the next two years. In short, this legislation helps operationalize environmental justice as the policy and practice of the Commonwealth. CCAN Action Fund supports this legislation.

Last Name: Grebe Organization: Audubon Naturalist Society Locality: Alexandria

As the Northern Virginia Conservation Advocate for the Audubon Naturalist Society, I’m emailing you to ask for your SUPPORT of HB2074, a bill to amend the Virginia Environmental Justice Act and make the EJ Interagency Working Group a permanent body. For Virginia to be truly equitable, it is critical that state agencies adopt and implement specific environmental justice policies and regulations that consider not only disproportionate, but also cumulative impacts to thoroughly evaluate their historic and anticipated effects. This is particularly significant for environmental activities near low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities that are impacted by several environmental risks and harms simultaneously. This bill contains a slew of important recommendations to help ensure Virginia is more environmentally just. One important part if this bill is giving the Department of Environmental Quality clear authority to deny permits, based on environmental justice impacts and cumulative impacts. Please ensure this aspect is retained. This authority is critical to any effort to improve DEQ's consideration of environmental justice in the environmental permitting processes. I ask you to once again SUPPORT HB2074. Thank you for your consideration!

Last Name: Piontek Organization: Appalachian Voices Locality: Blacksburg

Please support HB 2074 (Del. Simonds), which seeks to address environmental justice (EJ) concerns that are present in Virginia. An important component of HB 2074 is the requirement that certain state secretariats develop an EJ policy that agencies within that secretariat must adhere to. These EJ policies will require the covered agencies to consider where agency actions might have an adverse impact on an EJ community in the Commonwealth, and also to improve public outreach processes for agency actions that carry EJ concerns. HB 2074 also prompts localities to develop a similar understanding of where EJ communities are located, and asks these localities to strategize around reducing harms to those EJ communities. Ultimately, this bill seeks to embed EJ-thinking into the very framework of community planning at the local level, in the work of state agencies and within the executive branch of government, through the Interagency WG on EJ (which is currently only a temporary body). HB 2074 makes reasonable and prudent demands upon state and local government by ensuring that EJ concerns are more fully understood -- and addressed -- by a range of state agencies.

Last Name: DeVaughan Locality: Wise

Adding a citizen member from the Virginia Council on Environmental Justice and the state Director of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion to the state’s EJ Interagency Working Group in leadership positions is critical to help and hold agencies accountable for implementing ground-truthed, equitable, best practices for furthering environmental justice in the Commonwealth.

Last Name: Fjord Organization: Union Hill Freedmen Family Research Group & Friends of Buckingham Locality: Charlottesville and Buckingham County

Mr. Chairman and committee, I speak to the importance of passing the EJ Act amendments bill from the perspective of the cost benefits of doing so. Put another way, as the anthropologist and Buckingham resident since 1979 who worked with the African American community leaders of Union Hill to uncover robust evidence on race, population, existing health conditions, and Freedpeople historic significance, I have had a front row seat on the costs to taxpayers and EJ communities when DEQ does not do their statutory requirements for EJ "site suitability" and BACT review of alternate energy sources as pre-screening first steps for permits. Their legal requirement to do so was adjudicated by the US Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit in our lawsuit based on site-specific research argued by SELC and CBF using existing Virginia laws. I witnessed firsthand the consequences of no DEQ site community outreach yet thousands of DEQ staff hours dedicated to rewriting Dominion's ACP Union Hill air permit. We learned this fact from the Air Division's Mike Dowd at the only 2-hr "community outreach" meeting -- on closing day of permit comments, before the public hearing. Who proudly described how DEQ staff had "fixed two failed tries by Dominion to write the air permit." I asked then, and I ask this committee now: what if in Fall of 2015 DEQ had chosen to answer and not ignore our 70 letters asking DEQ to come to Union for a site visit? Not spent hundreds of staff hours to invent easily refutable means to deny each and every type of our community evidence with alternate, for Dominion benefit, facts? After DEQ lost our lawsuit, it has ignored the legal findings related to these EJ site review responsibilities. Under Covid, in rural EJ and internet desert communities, proceeded with permit processes without doing the pre-screening of sites they are required to do. We have heard from DEQ that implementing true and comprehensively inclusive community outreach is too expensive, doing EJ site review, and BACT analysis are too costly. Citing budgetary losses because of Covid. Please envision the cost benefits to taxpayers, to EJ communities, to Virginia's issues with sea-level rise, with water contamination issues, if DEQ staff time were used to do the actually quite low-cost actions of fully examining proposed sites of new or increased toxic pollution? As proactive and preventive of the true costs of toxic pollution? Preventive of legal costs for permits approved without following Virginia's laws and statutes? As preventive medicine -- reducing the disproportionate health burdens of asthma, diabetes, heart, lung, cancers, and respiratory illnesses that are true costs of toxic pollution? Environmental injustice is now acknowledged as a root driver of rapid climate change, by ensuring the highest consumers of fossil fuels do not face their worst impacts in their communities. Until now. When wildfires, increasingly damaging storms, and sea-rise impacts reveal yet another consequence of our 400-year history of racism. How do we calculate those dollar costs to Virginia? Please support this bill! Thank you.

Last Name: Vassey Organization: Virginia Manufacturers Association Locality: Richmond

The VMA respectfully requests your support for five friendly amendments to the HB2074 substitute. Two of the amendments were adopted by the Senate Ag Committee in Senator Hashmi’s companion bill (SB1318) to which Delegate Simonds is a co-patron. The requested amendments are as follows: • Line 25 Impacts are calculated as “positive and negative” in any fair evaluation. Senator Hashmi agreed and incorporated this into her SB1318. • Line 30 The definition of “environment” is too expansive. “Environmental and cultural” assets are the focus of EJ. • Line 41 The “Fenceline communities” definition is targeting industrial businesses. They did not choose to have property zoned residential near them. This is a local zoning responsibility and should be specifically identified as such. • Line 96 The Governor should be directed to appoint a citizen from the regulated community. Senator Hashmi agreed and incorporated this into her SB1318. • Line 142 The local EJ strategy should focus on environmental issues and EJ communities. Our definition refines the strategic focus and removes “fenceline communities” from everything but the identification process. Thank you for your consideration.

Last Name: Keller Locality: Richmond

I urge you to pass HB2074. Environmental injustice is the standard practice of most polluting industries. They locate their facilities in poor or black and brown communities because they believe people will not fight them or feel powerless to do anything about it. Virginia needs to continue to strengthen EJ practice and policies to really make the changes that need to be made to protect and preserve vulnerable communities. May it be the pleasure of the committee to pass this bill. Suzanne Keller Richmond, VA

Last Name: O'Keefe Locality: Richmond

I am a lifelong Virginian, voter, homeowner, father of two, teacher and artist. I urge you to vote yes on HB2047. Massive natural gas infrastructure is slated to be installed in upper Charles City County, devastating local air and water quality in a majority minority community. The Bellemeade fossil fuel power plant south of Richmond continues poisoning the air of a majority black neighborhood as I write. A historic black community in Henrico is slated to be paved for a Wegman's distribution center that will destroy a wetland while countless other developed sites lay vacant across the metro Richmond Area. These are just 3 environmental justice issues at top of mind for me right now. Let's stop destroying Black communities. Let's stop destroying minority communities. Let's stop destroying the ecology of this state. Let's stop destroying both at the same time. Let's name what is happening, and make a conscious choice to stop doing it. Pass this bill.

Last Name: campblin Organization: Virginia State Conference NAACP Locality: Fairfax

Dear Esteemed Leaders, I write to you today to implore that you vote yes on House Bill 2074, Environmental Justice Bill which authorizes agencies to take environmental justice considerations when making environmental related decisions. For far too long frontline communities have experience the most burdens without any economic benefits or community support. Left to suffer with poor air and water quality, heavy industrial uses in close proximity to parks and homes, and the destruction of natural, archaeological, cultural, or historic resources, this bill is the next step in addressing these injustices and presents a path forward to community healing. The permitting process proposed in this bill will finally give the voice and representation frontline communities so long deserve. Furthermore we need a reliable air monitoring system and this bill puts us in the right direction. We need to be able to identify and track any existing and potentially new hotspots (and as COVID clearly shows these hotspots correlates with the health of the community) NAACP has documented in various documents the negative impacts on the BIPOC community caused by poorly sited projects as well as the lack of representation and community will to work with the community to find a suitable and safe solution. The time is now to create legislation that is committed to do no harm. Please vote yes Thank you,

Last Name: Jemaine Organization: CCAN Action Fund Locality: glen allen

HB 2074 The Omnibus Environmental Justice Bill builds on the Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020 which established the promotion of environmental justice as the official policy of the Commonwealth. The Bill authorizes agencies when making environmental-related decisions to adopt policies designed to mitigate disproportionately adverse and cumulative environmental impacts on environmental justice communities at the state and local level over the next two years. In essence, this legislation operationalizes the concepts that were codified in 2020. CCAN Action Fund supports this bill.

Last Name: DeBoer Organization: The Commonwealth of VA Locality: Richmond

Please advance HB2074 in support of Environmental Justice !

Last Name: Eastridge Organization: Virginia Interfaith Power and Light Locality: Warrenton

This bill is important to stop the devastation of marginalized communities especially and of our environment entirely. I am your constituent and a person of faith and conscience. I urge you to support HB 2074. I believe we have a moral obligation to require state agencies to adopt and implement specific environmental justice policies and regulations that consider not only disproportionate, but also cumulative impacts of environmental burdens when evaluating their effects, either anticipated or historic. This is particularly significant for low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities that are impacted by several environmental risks and harms simultaneously.

Last Name: Colemon Organization: NAACP Locality: Waynesboro

We want to know if the air / water quality have been tested lately and whether the soil been tested lately as well because some residences plant gardens.

Last Name: Vassey Organization: Virginia Manufacturers Association Locality: Richmond

We appreciate the patrons amending these bills to incorporate positive changes to provide better participation and transparency for all stakeholders. However, we still have concerns pertaining to the modifications to and minor sources of certain permits. We also have concerns about the definition of "fenceline community" and the practicality of noticing all property owners individually within the radius defined.

Last Name: Christopher Leyen Organization: Virginia League of Conservation Voters Locality: Richmond

Virginia League of Conservation Voters supports this legislation. Reasons to SUPPORT HB 2074: This Bill builds on the state’s commitment to EJ by imposing specific requirements on state agencies and local governments to advance environmental justice. This Bill implements the VEJA across the state government by requiring each state agency to adopt an environmental justice policy to govern agency decision-making affecting the environment. It also directs the Virginia’s EJ Interagency Working Group, modeled after the EPA’s Federal Interagency Working Group, to collaboratively support and carry out the purposes of the Act. This Bill prioritizes the needs of low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities by expanding and improving their access to transparent public engagement processes at the state level; Under the VEJA, all Virginians have a right to fair treatment and meaningful involvement in environmental decision-making.

Last Name: Campblin Organization: Virginia State Conference NAACP Locality: Fairfax

We must protect BIPOC from harmful and obnoxious uses in their community. In addition, everyone should have the right to be able to have productive contributions In the decision making processes relating to land use matters that may have a significant influence in their well being and quality of life. HB2074 would require every state agency to adopt agency-specific environmental justice policies, and codifies the Environmental Justice Interagency Working Group. Further, it requires the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality and its citizen boards to approve a public participation plan to ensure that diverse voices are heard in hazardous use permitting applications. We must protect communities of color and other vulnerable populations, which is why we support this essential legislation. Our legislation should do no harm. Please support HB2074

Last Name: Adams Organization: Richmond Interfaith Climate Justice Locality: Richmond

Good Morning Committee Members, I am writing to comment on HB2074, the EJ Omnibus Bill, Del Simonds, patron. This bill builds on the important foundation that was laid by the Virginia Environmental Justice Act in the 2020 General Assembly, which initiated steps towards recognizing and protecting vulnerable rural, black, indigenous and communities of color that are most targeted to carry the burden of polluting industries in our state. Representatives of these communities provided the real, human insight and experiences that informed the initiatives outlined in HB2074 and the bill spells out needed next steps in Virginia's movement towards environmental justice. The growing recognition of the deep roots of systemic racism, colonialism, domination and cultural genocide in our Commonwealth also form the foundation and need for this legislation. Environmental justice is also racial justice, health, economic, community and social justice. Residents in marginalized communities continue to find themselves having to maneuver a business and governmental, local and state process and system weighted against them, without adequate access to vital information, education, resources, and support. Requiring state agencies and localities to adopt and implement specific EJ policies, and authorizing each state agency to issue regulations to implement their EJ policies once developed puts the proper weight on government taking responsibility toward providing EJ equity. I have witnessed how public engagement has been of such low quality in rural, brown and black communities and, especially in rural areas, poor internet and cell service and few gathering places results in residents not even knowing that a mega- polluting industry has sought to build in their neighborhood until most or all of the permitting process is complete. This bill prohibits the issuance of a permit for any covered activity until the applicant has submitted, and the permitting authority has approved, a public involvement plan, a cumulative impact statement, and an environmental justice impact statement and that will improve the possibility for residents to know in advance of projects moving forward and allow greater chance that they can speak of their concerns. And this bill for the first time requires that “cumulative impacts” of multiple polluting projects in an area are among those matters which must be considered in administration of agency actions. HB2074 provides solid, doable necessary changes and actions if we are serious about achieving environmental justice in Virginia . We have to decide whether or not black, indigenous, people of color in these communities will continue to be at the disadvantage, and their health, well-being and lives be sacrificed for business profits. Thank you to Delegate Simonds and I ask all the committee members to please vote to approve HB2074 and allow it to move forward.

Last Name: Pittard Organization: Sierra Club, VCN Locality: Henrico, VA

As a father, grandfather, driver of used Chevy Spark EV, owner of solar panels, planter and encourager of Virginia native plants in my yard, ground source geothermal heating/cooling owner, and citizen who wants our earthly home to survive and thrive so we humans and animals can survive and thrive, I support this measure. I urge you to support this measure. roger bruce giffen pittard 9201 minna drive henrico, va 23229

Last Name: Mathieu Organization: Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action Locality: Charlottesville, VA 22903

My name is Irène Mathieu and I am a pediatrician and professor at the University of Virginia. I am also a health equity researcher and advocate for climate justice. As a representative of Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action, I served on Virginia Conservation Network’s environmental justice review committee last year. This experience underscored for me the importance of reviewing policy with an environmental justice lens before it is enacted, through an inclusive and proactive promise. In my pediatric practice, I see the impact of climate change and environmental threats on a daily basis. From the baby born prematurely in a neighborhood disproportionately impacted by traffic-related air pollution to the child suffering from poorly controlled asthma due to poor air quality, environmental injustices threaten the health of the Commonwealth’s children. We have seen how the negative impacts of air and water pollution, climate change, and habitat destruction are borne most often by low-income Virginians, people of color, and those living in rural and inner city areas. That’s why I’m speaking today in support of House Bill 2074, also known as the Omnibus Environmental Justice Bill. This bill builds on the Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020 by requiring governmental agencies to prioritize the needs of the communities most severely affected by environmental decisions. This bill would expand and improve localized air quality monitoring, a move that would greatly assist the medical community and policymakers in crafting laws and regulations that consider environmental justice impacts on a wide range of issues. Recently Virginia Clinicians for Climate Action released our transportation emissions report. Unfortunately we were unable to focus on the disproportionate impacts to vulnerable populations due to a lack of available air quality monitoring data. It is particularly critical that we include the original requirement of this bill to establish permitting processes consistent with environmental justice standards, as originally written. Given the disproportionate impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on these same vulnerable communities, it is imperative that we reduce the risk of further harm. I urge you to join me in supporting House Bill 2074, for the health of all Virginians.

Last Name: Fisher Locality: Charlottesville

I strongly support the proposal of HB 2074 calling for the formation of a working group focused on Environmental Justice. Speaking as both a student and as a young person, I urge you to consider our collective futures. Without the formation of a working group designed specifically for interagency communication and action surrounding environmental justice, we will continue to reproduce complacency-- which will prove extremely harmful or fatal for communities vulnerable to the climate crisis. That vulnerability however is by no means the fault of the communities experiencing them-- rather the calculated result of systematic white supremacy and the extractive forces of capitalism. Virginia in particular bears witness to the disproportionate distribution of environmental harms that fall hard along racial and class lines. To name just one example, both the Atlantic Coast and Mountain Valley Pipelines have already endangered a number of communities across Virginia. Union Hill in Buckingham County-- a predominately Black community-- faces the potential of a harmful and potentially explosive pipeline compressor station. HB 2074 will help to build legal and political channels & checks and balances to address environmentally and socially harmful projects like the compressor station. I urge you all to pass this bill and promote accountability for large big perpetrators of harm in Virginia like Dominion Energy.

Last Name: Caywod Organization: Hampton Roads Legislative Collaborative Table Locality: Virginia Beach

I spent my career as a librarian in public service and I know that re-orienting an institutional mindset is not easy. I believe Del. Simonds' bill will guide that needed change while producing immediate, practical results in quality of life for those Virginians who are too often the ones bearing environmental burdens. I have watched and provided comments on several recent permit requests and have seen first-hand the need for change. Environmental justice is a moral imperative and the health of fellow Virginians is the backbone of a strong economy. Please vote yes on HB2074.

Last Name: Jones Locality: Newport News

The Environmental Protection Agency defines environmental justice as, “the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, on the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental law, regulations, and policies.” Unfortunately, this definition has not been accurate in practice. For far too long, environmental injustices have not been taken seriously, leaving devastating implications for vulnerable communities. As public servants, you all have a responsibility to provide equitable welfare for all residents of the commonwealth. You are responsible for our health and welfare. You are responsible for the sustainability of your communities. Passing HB 2074 will be a step towards fulfilling your duties. This bill is important as it calls for effective enforcement of environmental justice policies. Environmental injustice is not something that should be glossed over. The health implications are REAL. The racist implications are REAL. The capitalist implications are REAL. Environmental injustice is a REAL systemic problem and it's time for Virginia to treat it as such. Pass this bill to let the people of Virginia know that you care about their needs. Pass this bill to let your communities know that you are committed to their sustainability. Pass this bill and start taking environmental justice seriously.

Last Name: George Locality: Alexandria

STRONGLY SUPPORT HB2074!

Last Name: Pien Organization: Loudoun Climate Project Locality: Leesburg

I urge you to support this bill. VEJA’s EJ policy declaration alone and current public participation requirements do not provide for the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of Virginians in agencies' environmental decisions and actions. This is demonstrated by the persistent environmental injustices related to the siting of fossil fuel infrastructure, landfills, and other environmentally hazardous activities in environmental justice communities.

Last Name: Jemaine Organization: CCAN Action Fund Locality: glen allen

HB 2074 This bill builds on the Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020 which declared environmental justice (EJ) as the policy of the Commonwealth. First, the Bill amends VEJA to require state agencies to adopt agency specific EJ policies, and codifies the EJ Interagency Working Group created in last year’s budget bill. It also authorizes the EJ Interagency Working Group to conduct an assessment on the state’s air quality monitoring practices. Lastly, the bill requires local planning commissions to include an EJ strategy in their jurisdiction’s comprehensive plan. In short, this legislation operationalizes the policies and practices set forth by the 2020 Act. CCAN Action Fund asks for your support of HB 2074.

Last Name: Green Organization: SERV (Students for Equity and Reform in Virginia) Locality: Charlottesville

I urge you to support HB 2074 as a member of Students for Equity and Reform at UVA. We believe that environmental injustice has been overlooked by the state for far too long. The fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people in the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental policies has broken down along the lines of race and class. Virginia communities have been drastically undermined by the effects of proximity to landfills, coal plants, and hazardous waste. Union Hill, Lambert’s Point, and the Mayfield neighborhood in Fredericksburg are just a few examples of communities burdened by a lack of environmental regulation at the local level. Our own DEQ released a study in October of 2020, which recommends that Virginia municipalities be required to consider environmental justice in their comprehensive plans and zoning ordinances. We believe that there is no better way to ensure that neighborhoods are protected from the byproducts of encroaching industry than HB 2074, and the standards it aims to hold to local government.

Last Name: Griffin Organization: New Virginia Majority Locality: Richmond

At New Virginia Majority, we support HB2047. Under the Virginia Environmental Justice Act (VEJA), environmental justice “means the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of every person, regardless of race, color, national origin, income, faith, or disability, regarding the development, implementation, or enforcement of any environmental law, regulation, or policy.” We support this Bill because it builds upon that declaration by requiring agencies across the state government to adopt an environmental justice policy to govern agency decision-making affecting the environment. It also codifies and directs the EJ Interagency Working Group, included in last year’s budget and modeled after the EPA’s Federal Interagency Working Group, to collaboratively support and carry out the purposes of the Act. This legislation is particularly significant for making environmental permit decision-making accessible and participatory for covered activities and regulating environmental activities that often occur near low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities in Virginia that can be impacted by several environmental risks and harms simultaneously (cumulative impacts). VEJA’s EJ policy declaration and current public participation requirements alone cannot provide for the needed fair treatment and meaningful involvement of Virginians in agencies' environmental decisions and actions. This is evidenced by the expansive recommendations from DEQ’s recent 2020 EJ Study and demonstrated by continued environmental injustices related to the siting, construction, and operation of fossil fuel infrastructure, landfills, and other environmentally hazardous activities across the state. For these reasons, we highly recommend that the committee support this legislation, especially for its amendments to the VEJA and its effort to improve DEQ's consideration of environmental justice in the environmental permitting processes. Tyneshia Griffin, the Environmental Policy Research Analyst at New Virginia Majority.

Last Name: Forrester Organization: Virginia Organizing Locality: Richmond City

I am writing to voice my strong support for HB2074 and encourage the delegates on this committee to vote in favor of advancing the bill forward.

Last Name: van Tine Organization: Hampton Roads Legislative Collaborative Table, York R. Sierra Club EJ Committee Locality: Newport News

HB - 2074 is a long needed remedy for Environmental Injustices that have been routinely perpetrated on People of Color, Fenceline Communities and Environmental Justice Communities. Often, by the time these communities have learned of the damaging project the permit has already been through almost the entire process. The bill includes a way forward that is fair and needed to insure that such communities do not bear the brunt of dangerous pollutants in their air, water and soil -- impacting their health to a much greater extent than the health of more affluent communities and communities that are not primarily communities of color. Low income communities should not be expected to unfairly be exposed to noxious chemicals and dangerous projects just because of their income or racial composition. I urge you to support this critically important and long overdue Environmental Justice Legislation so that all Virginians may breath clean air and live in healthy environments.

Last Name: Smallwood Locality: Virginia Beach

Imagine waking up in the morning to the sound of birds chirping and the warmth of sunrays beaming on your forehead. You rise out of bed and prepare for your morning coffee. Yet, instead of the aroma of coffee percolating, you are assaulted by a rotten odor, or even worse, gas fumes. This is just a foretaste of what continues to threaten many communities in Virginia. And, this has been especially the case for low-income communities and communities of color. Therefor, I urge the committee to pass the Environmental Justice Omnibus Bill (HB 2074). My personal fight for environmental justice in my community has a similar tale. I presently serve on the ministerial staff at New Macedonia Christian UCC in the Bruce’s Park area of Norfolk. As a leader in the church and community, I am deeply connected to the families, young people, and schools. In 2018, my community came face to face with environmental inequality when a solid waste company attempted to place a trash dump in the heart of our community. After months of community organizing and protesting, the proposal to build the trash dump was denied. While my community was able to win this battle, there are a host of other communities still in the fight against big business seeking to obstruct the communities with like environmental hazards. Environmental justice is nonetheless justice, for clean air and clean drinking water is a basic human right. Therefore, I fully support Delegate Shelly Simonds and the Environmental Justice Omnibus Bill, and so should you. Passing this bill will require state agencies to adopt and implement agency specific environmental justice policies, require local planning commissions to incorporate environmental justice in comprehensive plans, and expand public involvement and consider environmental justices and cumulative impacts on marginalized communities.

Last Name: Zlatanova Locality: McLean

Environmental justice needs to be a core pillar of our environmental efforts because it addresses the needs of those most deeply impacted by environmental issues: communities of color and low income communities. There is tremendous urgency behind environmental issues and that is triple the case for EJ communities which bear the brunt of systemic racism and colonialist history on top. We need a requirement for agencies and local governments to advance EJ initiatives, or otherwise it won't happen: we've seen EJ communities deprioritized time and time again and we can't afford to have that any more. I strongly support this bill and urge Delegates to do the same. Thank you for your consideration.

Last Name: Turner Organization: Virginia Conservation Network Locality: Richmond

Please support HB2074. Despite the passage of last year's Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020, the state still lacks the necessary tools to ensure EJ is meaningfully carried out throughout the Commonwealth. To accomplish this, it is necessary that we require EJ at the state and local levels, improve transparency and public involvement in decision-making, and authorizing agencies to make decisions to mitigate adverse impacts. Additionally, please support HB 2148. Simply put, this bill streamlines project approval for energy storage and hybrid projects, which combine clean energy and storage, to allow for rapid approval of solar projects up to 150MW, a necessary process to help us quickly and efficiently achieve our clean energy goals.

Last Name: Chapman Locality: Charlottesville

The benefits and burdens of agencies' environmental activities remain unequal among Virginians along lines of race, income, and geography. I support the Bill because it seeks to redress this inequity by requiring government agencies at the state and local level to take specific actions to advance environmental justice.

Last Name: Mafnas Organization: Food & Water Watch Locality: Alexandria

On behalf of Food & Water Watch's 28,000 members in Virginia, we support HB2074. We believe that in order to meaningfully address environmental justice issues, an interagency working group must be established and thorough measures, as outlined in HB2074, must be required for any project that affects a person's right to clean air and water. FWW believes HB2074 is necessary to address the systemic racism and economic factors that lead to polluting projects disproportionately affecting person of color and low-income communities. Thank you.

Last Name: Matteson Organization: Citizen Locality: North Chesterfield

Please support HB 1902 (Carr) and please support HB 2074 (Simonds) Thank you kindly, --Tyla Matteson, Chesterfield County

Last Name: Zweerink Organization: Green New Deal VA Locality: Richmond

I am writing to ask for your support for HB 2074, the Omnibus Environmental Justice Bill. The benefits and burdens of agencies' environmental activities remain unequal among Virginians along lines of race, income, and geography. I support the Bill because it seeks to redress this inequity by requiring government agencies at the state and local level to take specific actions to advance environmental justice. State agencies must be required to adopt and implement specific EJ policies and regulations that consider not only disproportionate but also cumulative impacts to thoroughly evaluate their historic and anticipated environmental actions. This is particularly significant for environmental activities near low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities that are impacted by several environmental risks and harms simultaneously. VEJA’s EJ policy declaration alone and current public participation requirements do not provide for the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of Virginians in agencies' environmental decisions and actions. This is demonstrated by the persistent environmental injustices related to the siting of fossil fuel infrastructure, landfills, and other environmentally hazardous activities in environmental justice communities. The amendment of VEJA is even more critical in the face of an international respiratory virus outbreak, regional climate change, the state’s clean energy transition, and the rollback of over 100 federal environmental protections (Harvard School of Law; 2020) including the National Environmental Protection Policy Act (NEPA) by the Trump-led U.S. executive administration. For environmental justice to be effective in Virginia, we must back the VEJA’s EJ policy declaration with effective legislation that addresses disparity in access to healthy environment at the source.

Last Name: Lessard Locality: Richmond, VA

I write in support of HB2074. As a Virginian that lives in an area identified in the NY Times article as one of the most swelting parts of Richmond due to decades of racist housing policy, I see everyday the impact of inequity in our neighborhoods. Although Virginia now has a basic environmental justice policy, our state still lacks the tools to ensure environmental justice is carried out. I urge you to support HB2074 to operationalize environmental justice at the state and local levels.

Last Name: Fust Locality: Augusta

I would like to see the Virginia government putting the well being of communities of color first when considering permits for new industrial construction in those communities. We have been redlining and placing polluting industry in these communities for far too long.

Last Name: Kreydatus Organization: Mothers Out Front Locality: Henrico

I have spent the past two years supporting the community of Charles City County as they've faced endless environmental justice threats from two fracked gas plants permitted for their county without adequate citizen notification, and also the threat of the expansion of a mega landfill in their backyards. With good reason, these residents worry that these projects will increase already high cancer rates, erode their property values, and deplete their water supply. This community was targeted for these projects, and not even informed about the permit process, because regulators and developers disregarded and dismissed the rights of this majority minority population. This is environmental injustice at its worst, and it has happened in Cumberland County, in Buckingham County, in Newport News with the permitting of a naval shipyard . . . the list goes on and on. Virginia needs legislation that will protect all of its citizens and ensure environmental injustice does not continue. Please support HB2074 and the amazing work of the Environmental Interagency working group. In order to ensure the rights of Virginians, we need environmental justice and we need to pass HB 2074.

Last Name: Srinivasaraghavan Locality: Chantilly

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Last Name: Tuttle Locality: Millboro, VA

There is no excuse to prolong the past due wait for EJ concerns to be at the forefront of the decision making process. Too long have the benefits and burdens of agencies' environmental activities remain unequal among Virginians along lines of race, income, and geography. This bill is a vital expansion of the state's responsibility to use EJ in every consideration by requiring each state agency to adopt an environmental justice policy to govern agency decision-making affecting the environment, and by imposing specific requirements on state agencies and local governments to advance environmental justice. This Bill prioritizes the needs of low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities by expanding and improving their access to transparent public engagement processes at the state level; Under the VEJA, all Virginians have a right to fair treatment and meaningful involvement in environmental decision-making.

Last Name: Dr. John Whitley Locality: Williamsburg

We are surrounded and embraced by OUR environment. The power of the forces therein determines the conditions of our present and the quality of our future. The Environment has no other legal protections than those enacted by you and other folk in their elected chambers. Your family depends on a supportive environment for all their activities...and their lives. So does mine. You hold in your finger-tip the vote for the quality of the future for our land and our people. Vote YES for HB2074

Last Name: Rev Robert Chesnut Locality: Glen Allen

Please support this legislation to make our Commonwealth truly green.

Last Name: Milner Organization: Virginia Organizing Locality: Norfolk

I support Bill 2074. Communities of color are usually impacted by industrial construction sites, hazardous dumping grounds and sewage plants This bill allows the communities impacted to have a voice in the process. This is a step in the right direction. Yes to environmental justice in Virginia.

Last Name: Ross Organization: Virginia Interfaith Center Locality: Springfield

As climate change wreaks havoc on our world, it is increasingly obvious that our own actions and lifestyles have highly impacted and worsened the natural phenomenon of climate shifting. As a citizen of Springfield, it is utterly imperative that we seek alternate sources of energy, continue recycling, and provide healthy climate actions for future generations of all economic, racial, and other marginalized communities. The churches of Virginia have joined to raise our prayers and our voices to see that we treat our planet with the respect it deserves, and ensure a healthy life for all those to come. Please vote YES on HB 2074 and other initiatives that work to preserve our community so that many may enjoy it for decades of our future. Dixie Ross 7704C Lexton Place Springfield, VA 22152

Last Name: Little Locality: Charlottesville

I urge you to support HB 2074. The state of Virginia has a long history of environmental injustice and we need to be stronger in our will to protect our people from environmental degradation. We all need clean air and clean water. As a mother and as a nurse I believe we have a moral obligation to require state agencies to adopt and implement specific environmental justice policies and regulations that consider not only disproportionate, but also cumulative impacts of environmental burdens when evaluating their effects, either anticipated or historic. This is particularly significant for low-income areas, communities of color, or historically underserved communities that are impacted by several environmental risks and harms simultaneously.

Last Name: Wambold Organization: Virginia Interfaith Power and Light Locality: Henrico

So many news articles report the harm we have done to our environment. As a person of faith, I believe we have a responsibility to care for the planet. This bill is a step in the right direction. I also think it is good that environmental ills are recognized as harmful especially to the economically disadvantaged. I hope HB2074 will become law. Thank you.

Last Name: Johnston Organization: VAIPL Locality: Richmond

As a person of faith, I urge you to support the Environmental Justice Omnibus bill HB 2074 AND Environmental Justice Act Amendment. We need environmental justice because vulnerable populations in Virginia continue to bear increased risks from all kinds of polluting industries. Protecting our shared Earth and caring for my neighbors is my moral and civic obligation. HB 2074 is the first step in setting a standard for environmental justice in Virginia. I ask you to create a basic environmental justice framework for the Commonwealth that protects all of Virginians by passing these bills.

Last Name: Ware Organization: N/a Locality: Tappahannock

As a citizen who lives in the state and on the Rappahannock river and has seen the impact of poor stewardship, I ask that the General Assembly support these bills.

HB2078 - Industrial hemp; updates laws to address the new hemp producer license.
Last Name: Troxel Locality: Lynchburg

I was not able to hop on to join the zoom mtg in time to be able to comment, but please see the email I sent you all re the administration's support of the language in this bill on monday evening as amended previously when it passed 22-0. That language is reflected in SB 1115 which passed the Senate Ag Committee 13-0 yesterday. Thank you, Mike Troxel Old VA Hemp Co Mike@oldvirginiahempco.com

Last Name: Troxel Organization: Hemp Farmer Locality: Lynchburg

Delegate Marshall's bill is one that is sorely needed for hemp farmers. As a hemp farmer, my company grew 3000 plants for CBD this past year. We laid down over 1 mile (16,000 feet) of irrigation line. There were changing parameters on regulatory agencies between VDACS and USDA as to who was and was not going to be the agency we needed to be registered with and when - even up until a week before we were harvesting. As you ccan imagine, it's almost impossible to operate in that environment. We MUST, MUST, MUST, MUST have Delegate Marshall's bill in order to protect our hemp farmers and the entire hemp industry here in Virginia. We really need the USDA license reciprocity with VDACS to mean that VA farmers will be protected if they have a USDA license. You can't really have an industry without those protections. Additionally, maintaining a separate option for VA hemp farmers solely through VDACS is also important. That would mean farmers could choose the option that was best for them - with the set of benefits and limitations that go with the option that they choose, and that choice and flexibility will be a huge boost to the industry here in Virginia - and by extension, the local economies as well. This bill dovetails beautifully with Senator Peake's bill SB 1115, and if we want Virginia's hemp industry to reach it's potential, we need this bill - with the proposed amendments by Del. Edmunds - to pass. If this bill does not pass, the tens of millions of dollars of investment already put into the hemp industry will unnecessarily be put at risk - let alone future potential investments. Thank you for supporting this bill and our nearly 2000 hemp farmers in the Commonwealth.

Last Name: Ware Organization: N/a Locality: Tappahannock

As a citizen who lives in the state and on the Rappahannock river and has seen the impact of poor stewardship, I ask that the General Assembly support these bills.

HB2129 - Chesapeake Bay; wastewater treatment, Enhanced Nutrient Removal Certainty Program established.
Last Name: Pomeroy Organization: VAMWA (Va Assn of Municipal Wastewater Agencies) Locality: Henrico

VAMWA (Va Assn of Municipal Wastewater Agencies) supports HB 2129, which is a carefully structured program to carry out the wastewater component of the Chesapeake Bay TMDL Phase III Watershed Implementation Plan (WIP). The bill calls on the top nutrient reduction performers in VA's Bay restoration program -- municipal clean water utilities -- to do extra to help the Commonwealth meet statewide goals in 2025, while other sectors continue working on their original 2010 TMDL obligations. Although the bill imposes a large list of requirements on municipal facilities, it is more cost-effective (State WQIF and Local shares) than the original WIP approach that might otherwise be mandated through a pending DEQ rulemaking and VAMWA strongly supports this compromise over the WIP as originally envisioned. As in earlier Bay TMDL phases, critical to implementing this bill (or the more costly pending regulations the bill would supersede) is for State WQIF appropriations over the next 5 years to continue to keep pace and match progress under the necessary engineering and construction contracts. Currently the HB 2129 approach is an estimated estimated 5-year (CY2021 - CY2025) $800M effort with associated State WQIF share of $300M per existing WQIF statutory formulas. Peak construction and related spending is expected CY2023-2025. Thank you for the General Assembly's rock-solid 24-year history of fully funding the Point Source WQIF on the same schedule as the underlying engineering and construction contracts for these multi-year treatment upgrade projects for Bay purposes.

Last Name: Bryant Organization: Virginia Municipal League Locality: Richmond

The Virginia Municipal Leagues supports HB 2129. The bill affected nearly 30 wastewater facilities, many of which are owned by towns and cities. The bill provides greater planning and budgeting certainty as well as greater certainty in pollution-reduction targets. The bill is a much more cost-effective approach -- calculated to be at least $173 million less expensive -- than proposed in the Watershed Implementation Plant Phase III. HB 2129 will continue ensuring that Virginia meets its 2025 WIP3 Chesapeake Bay obligations in the wastewater sector.

Last Name: Bryant Organization: Virginia Water and Waste Authorities Association Locality: Richmond

The Virginia Waster and Wastewater Authorities Association -- represented dozens of public service authorities -- supports HB 2129. The bill affected nearly 30 wastewater facilities, many of which are owned by authorities. The bill provides greater planning and budgeting certainty as well as greater certainty in pollution-reduction targets. The bill is a much more cost-effective approach than proposed in the Watershed Implementation Plant Phase III.

Last Name: Sanner Organization: CHESAPEAKE BAY FOUNDATION Locality: Henrico

Good afternoon, Chairman Plum and members of the committee. I am Peggy Sanner, Chesapeake Bay Foundation Executive Director. Thank you for the opportunity to speak about HB 2129. I thank Del Lopez for patroning this important bill which addresses next steps in upgrading Virginia’s wwtp program to help Virginia meet its Bay commitments. His legislative and environmental leadership has been invaluable. I also thank Del Bulova whose deep and long term engagement in these issues has also been indispensable. As always, we have appreciated the opportunity to work with our partners Chris Pomeroy at VAMWA and Preston Bryant for VML. And I would be deeply remiss if I did not mention the Administration and especially the ww staff at DEQ on whose tireless expert assistance this whole enterprise rests. As stated, the bill will ensure Virginia’s wastewater program will meet some important pollution reduction goals set out in the Phase III Watershed Implementation Plan – a result we surely applaud. But—without stepping away from the compromise reflected in the current bill -- what the bill does not do is also important. 1. The bill does not require the level of improvements necessary for Virginia to overcome looming pollution reduction shortfalls from other sectors. Progress in stemming polluted runoff that reaches waterways from developed lands hovers between flat and negative. And, frankly, Virginia has never funded our agriculture programs at the level necessary to meet that sector’s goals. While the Clean Water Act and Virginia’s State Water Control Law embody the principle and provide the tools to eliminate pollution from wwtp and other point sources to achieve clean water, this bill will significantly limit the extent to which Virginia can rely on achievable WWTP reductions to fill that gap. 2. Equally important, this bill does not take advantage of obvious and achievable opportunities to meet that shortfall. Unlike the plan first introduced in the Phase III WIP in 2019, and -- unlike the comprehensive plan currently before the State Water Control Board for approval -- this bill requires no new pollution reductions from several large facilities discharging to the James and York Rivers – even though their current rates of discharge are substantially higher than from facilities along the Potomac and Rappahannock. The ongoing pollution levels from these facilities and—frankly, the lack of water quality equity for Virginians downstream – cause us great concern. 3. Yes, the bill includes a few measures in a nod to those concerns. Notably, it provides that 3 James River facilities could be required to reduce their nitrogen pollution loads in the future. But such reductions are deeply contingent, limited in scope, and, in any event, would not come to fruition for 15 years. That is a long time to wait for clean water equity. With all that, I close by asking - in muted tones -- to support this bill. But I also ask that you continue to strengthen this program and the related water quality programs for stormwater and agriculture that, in sum, have made Virginia a national leader in Bay restoration. We cannot become complacent, recognizing that this work will only become more difficult due to pressures from needed development but also due to challenges arising from climate change. Thank you.

Last Name: McDonald Organization: Virginia Association of Counties Locality: Richmond

VACo is pleased to support HB 2129 and is grateful to the patron and all of the other stakeholders for their hard work on this important legislation.

Last Name: Witherington Locality: palmyra

Virginians deserve to breathe clean air. Unfortunately, pollution from vehicles is killing almost the same number of Virginians that die every year in traffic accidents - pollution that hits low-income neighborhoods and communities of color the hardest. While the General Assembly has prioritized acting to address climate change in recent years, cutting back power plant emissions and prioritizing clean energy, emissions from the transportation sector still make up almost half of our state's carbon footprint, with most of this coming from gas- or diesel-powered passenger vehicles. This is why the legislature must act in 2021 to protect public health and address the climate crisis by working to secure a cleaner transportation future. I urge you to support House Bill 1965 and adopt a Clean Cars Standard in Virginia as a first step toward a cleaner, more equitable transportation system in the Commonwealth. Under this program, Virginians will have more access to and greater incentive to purchase Low Emission Vehicles and Zero Emission Vehicles - vehicles that are in high demand but short supply right now as they're being sent predominately to other states with standards in place already. Over time, auto dealers will have to stock cleaner cars, which in turn will help protect public health and the environment by driving down pollution, and save Virginians thousands of dollars over the life of the vehicle. The climate crisis won't go away without years of hard work. If we fail to act now, we'll only fall further behind. I urge you to prioritize climate action in 2021 by supporting House Bill 1965. Thanks, Allen.

Last Name: schutt Locality: henrico va

We need more clean fuel vehicles in VA. Please help support them.

Last Name: Sanner Organization: Chesapeake Bay Foundation Locality: Henrico

CBF supports this bill conditioned on seeing the final amendments we expect to be made by Wednesday.

HB2148 - Small renewable energy projects; energy storage.
Last Name: Leyen Organization: Virginia League of Conservation Voters Locality: Richmond

Virginia League of Conservation Voters supports this legislation. This bill streamlines the permitting process for energy storage projects, allowing them to follow the same process currently used for solar and wind projects, known as ‘permit-by-rule.’ Specifically, this bill: Provides for efficient approval of energy storage, the process of capturing energy from renewable energy projects and storing it for later redistribution on the grid based on demand. Will make it easier to build hundreds of energy storage and hybrid projects, which combine clean energy and storage to make a resilient, reliable grid. Streamlines project approval to help realize over $3 billion in storage-related investment in Virginia over the next 15 years and will create good-paying jobs here in Virginia.

Last Name: Turner Organization: Virginia Conservation Network Locality: Richmond

Please support HB2074. Despite the passage of last year's Virginia Environmental Justice Act of 2020, the state still lacks the necessary tools to ensure EJ is meaningfully carried out throughout the Commonwealth. To accomplish this, it is necessary that we require EJ at the state and local levels, improve transparency and public involvement in decision-making, and authorizing agencies to make decisions to mitigate adverse impacts. Additionally, please support HB 2148. Simply put, this bill streamlines project approval for energy storage and hybrid projects, which combine clean energy and storage, to allow for rapid approval of solar projects up to 150MW, a necessary process to help us quickly and efficiently achieve our clean energy goals.

Last Name: Ross Organization: Virginia Interfaith Center Locality: Springfield

As climate change wreaks havoc on our world, it is increasingly obvious that our own actions and lifestyles have highly impacted and worsened the natural phenomenon of climate shifting. As a citizen of Springfield, it is utterly imperative that we seek alternate sources of energy, continue recycling, and provide healthy climate actions for future generations of all economic, racial, and other marginalized communities. The churches of Virginia have joined to raise our prayers and our voices to see that we treat our planet with the respect it deserves, and ensure a healthy life for all those to come. Please vote YES on HB 2074 and other initiatives that work to preserve our community so that many may enjoy it for decades of our future. Dixie Ross 7704C Lexton Place Springfield, VA 22152

Last Name: Estes Organization: Apex Clean Energy Locality: Charlottesville

To House Agriculture, Chesapeake and Natural Resources - Natural Resources Sub-Committee Members, My name is Rachael Estes and I am the Senior Government Affairs Manager for Apex Clean Energy. I am writing to express our support for HB 2148, introduced by Delegate Rodney Willett. Apex Clean Energy is a renewable energy company that develops, constructs, and operates wind and solar power facilities across North America. We are based in Charlottesville, VA and employee over 200 renewable energy experts. We have over 1GW of projects in development in Virginia alone, including the first ever onshore wind project, Rocky Forge. We were thrilled to see the Virginia legislature pass the VCEA last session and look forward to helping Virginia accelerate the shift to clean energy. In order to do so, energy storage will need to be a part of that equation, as the VCEA acknowledges. However, the current approval process requires energy storage projects to be approved through a cumbersome and complex process at the SCC. Allowing energy storage projects to be permitted through the “permit by rule” process would help streamline energy storage projects by offering them the same clear process as wind and solar development. This is especially true for energy storage projects that are built in conjunction with solar projects – something that is becoming more common and will make a big difference in helping Virginia meet its ambitious clean energy goals. As a renewable energy developer heavily invested in Virginia, we strongly support incorporating energy storage into the PBR process. Please vote ‘yes’ on HB 2148. Thank you, Rachael Estes Senior Government Affairs Manager Apex Clean Energy Inc.

Last Name: Staples Locality: Chesapeake

Good Day, I would like you to know that on every trip that I make to various State Forest and the George Washington National Forest. I find several ballons while hiking, hunting or fishing. On my visits to Virginia Beach they are a constant wash up item that I find and dispose of. Please put an end to this needless celebratory practice. The harm to wildlife is terrible. 40 years ago, I watched a whitetail doe pull a balloon from a Mountain Laurel and partially eat it. Imagine how many times that scene has been repeated over the decades since. Thank you.

Last Name: DePew Organization: Urban Grid Solar Locality: Midlothian

Madam Chairman and members of the Committee, Urban Grid is a Richmond based developer of utility-scale solar and solar + storage hybrid projects. Since our founding in 2011, we have been working and investing in Virginia. Urban Grid is strongly committed to enhancing economic opportunities and bringing solar energy to Virginia. On behalf of the Urban Grid Solar, we wish to express our strong support for Delegate Willett's HB 2148, which grants the Department of Environmental Quality the authority to permit hybrid solar + storage and standalone storage projects. With the passage of the Virginia Clean Economy Act (VCEA), the legislature saw fit to set a goal of constructing over 18,000MW of solar and 3,000MW of storage in the next 10-15 years. Virginia developers have heeded this call and to date have nearly 20,000MW of solar projects under development, with nearly 6,000MW considered combined solar and storage hybrid projects. As it stands, a significant portion of that 6,000MW figure is at risk due to the current system for hybrid storage permitting. Beyond the VCEA’s storage targets, Hybrid and standalone storage projects are essential to meeting the VCEA’s solar goals as well. As more solar comes online, hybrid and standalone storage is needed to better integrate these renewables into the grid. The current permitting system creates two separate, parallel permitting processes for different parts of a single hybrid project. Any hybrid storage project with storage over 1MW would need both non-discretionary approval from the Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) for the solar and then discretionary approval from the SCC for the storage. Urban Grid believes that the current discretionary permitting frameworks at the SCC significantly increase the complexity, the risk and the development timeline for developing hybrid assets in Virginia. This is even before the potential for delay in the SCC process on the specific permitting for these plants, and the possible denial of permit applications late in the development cycle, further diminishing the Virginia solar queue needed to meet the VCEA’s goals. The issue here lies in the fact that both the solar component and the storage component are integral to the entirety of a hybrid project. Hybrid projects are planned, designed and engineered from the ground up to incorporate storage into the overall solar plant. This design supports a specific business model, which is much more complex than a solar only project. A developer could not simply remove the storage component from a hybrid project, that would be like trying to unscramble an egg. This legislation is designed to remedy the current predicament that we find ourselves in. By placing hybrid and standalone storage under the Permit By Rule process, this synchronizes and streamlines the permitting processes in the state for renewable, hybrid and standalone storage projects better enabling Virginia to meet its stated renewable goals. For these reasons, we thank you for your consideration and strongly support HB 2148. Sincerely, Frank DePew President & CEO Urban Grid Solar

Last Name: Smucker Organization: Chesapeake Solar and Storage Association (formally known as MDV-SEIA) Locality: Richmond City

CHESSA is in opposition to Delegate Webert's HB 2067, as it would shrink the MW limit on PBR solar projects from 150MWs (current code) to 50MWs, cutting the size of eligible projects by 2/3rds. This policy would work against the Commonwealth's directive by the VCEA and directly prohibit us from successfully achieving Virginia's ambitious clean energy goals. CHESSA supports Delegate Willet's HB 2148, which adds energy storage to the "Permit by Rule" (PBR) program, which will allow battery storage and hybrid (storage + renewables) projects to use DEQ's PBR process for permitting. This model program ensures that projects are permitted safely and quickly and remains a key attraction to solar developers. By expanding and streamlining this process for hybrid and standalone storage projects, the Commonwealth will be able to achieve its clean energy goals laid out by the VCEA while continuing to attract investment and create jobs in Virginia.

HB2221 - Environmental permits; community and environmental justice outreach.
Last Name: Vassey Organization: Virginia Manufacturers Association Locality: Richmond

The VMA represents the largest number of environmental permit holders and the interests of industrial businesses in the Commonwealth. However, the VMA was never engaged in the development of this legislation or afforded the privilege of a meeting with the bill's patron after repeated requests. Regardless, the VMA submitted friendly amendments to Delegate Hayes by email. Our intent was two-fold: 1) make this regulation more practicable; and 2) eliminate minor air sources. Our rationale is as follows: • Exempting all minor air sources, except greenfield stationary sources, will still enable the focus of EJ to continue without capturing hundreds of other small permittees that will not have the staff or resources to conduct this level of effort for truly minor environmental impacts. We also acknowledge this will make the regulation more manageable for DEQ. • Applying a uniform public notice requirement will better ensure compliance. Three and five miles is unmanageable and arbitrary. For example, in dense urban areas, this could be tens of thousands of people. Written notice to land owners adjacent to permittees is practical. Beyond these technical amendments, the expansive regulatory control established by this bill will have a substantial impact on energy resources and industrial development at the State, Regional, and Local levels. The new broadly defined standards create substantial uncertainty that will repel most investors that have equal or better choices in competing states. There are other concerns about this bill that have not been considered such as the Judicial Review of EJ cost-benefit analysis and modeling; better standards for pollution exposure vs. toxicity determinations; impacts of carbon leakage from suppressing industrial development; redefining "fenceline" communities to include proper consideration of local land use regulations beyond the control of permitted businesses; lack of industry involvement in citizen boards promulgating regulations and permit determinations; a better understanding of industry cluster policies of state and local economic development programs; and a better understanding of the specific definition of EJ, EJ community, and EJ impact assessments (positive and negative). In closing, the VMA and its member companies support the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income with respect to the development, implementation and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations and policies. As such, it is advisable that this bill should be further evaluated for unintended consequences and directly engage the regulated community and economic development community to produce a consensus bill for the 2022 General Assembly's consideration.

Last Name: Killius Organization: James River Association Locality: Richmond

The James River Association appreciates the opportunity to register our support for HB2221, a bill to advance public outreach so that communities have early notice and the ability to weigh in on the projects and permits that will affect their health and well-being. We thank the patron for carrying this important legislation, and we hope it is the will of the committee to report the bill.

Last Name: Caywood Organization: Hampton Roads Legislative Collaborative Table Locality: Virginia Beach

We support HB 2221 Environmental permits; community and environmental justice outreach. Two dozen Hampton Roads social justice organizations gathered in August and prioritized legislative issues. This bill responds to one of our six top priorities. Public engagement is critical to successful government. When people don't have the resources to meaningfully comment on permits that will affect the quality of their lives, the downstream costs can be massive. This is an issue not only of justice but also of practicality. Please vote for HB2221.

Last Name: Vassey Organization: Virginia Manufacturers Association Locality: Richmond

We appreciate the patrons amending these bills to incorporate positive changes to provide better participation and transparency for all stakeholders. However, we still have concerns pertaining to the modifications to and minor sources of certain permits. We also have concerns about the definition of "fenceline community" and the practicality of noticing all property owners individually within the radius defined.

Last Name: Ford Organization: Chesapeake Bay Foundation Locality: Belle Haven Virginia

Chesapeake Bay Foundation supports this legislation as an important first step in reforming our public outreach and involvement process. This legislation is line with the e

Last Name: Ross Organization: Virginia Interfaith Center Locality: Springfield

As climate change wreaks havoc on our world, it is increasingly obvious that our own actions and lifestyles have highly impacted and worsened the natural phenomenon of climate shifting. As a citizen of Springfield, it is utterly imperative that we seek alternate sources of energy, continue recycling, and provide healthy climate actions for future generations of all economic, racial, and other marginalized communities. The churches of Virginia have joined to raise our prayers and our voices to see that we treat our planet with the respect it deserves, and ensure a healthy life for all those to come. Please vote YES on HB 2074 and other initiatives that work to preserve our community so that many may enjoy it for decades of our future. Dixie Ross 7704C Lexton Place Springfield, VA 22152

HB2275 - Food and drink permit; Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services to issue.
Last Name: Oconnor Organization: Va petroleum and convenience marketers Locality: Richmond

E We support the substitute

HB2298 - Muzzleloading rifle and shotgun; clarifies definitions.
Last Name: Webb Locality: Hanover

This bill will bring the Virginia definition of muzzleloader in line with the Federal definition. It will increase safety by helping to prevent overcharges and making it easier for hunters to unload their muzzleloader if they did not use it while hunting. VCDL supports this bill. I respectfully request that you vote in favor of passing to the floor of the House. Patricia Webb

Last Name: Van Cleave Organization: Virginia Citizens Defense League Locality: Chesterfield

Speaking as president of the Virginia Citizens Defense League (VCDL) and its 35,000 members, VCDL supports this bill.

End of Comments