Climate change is real. It is happening because we continue to extract and burn fossil fuels (coal, oil, natural gas) at an ever increasing rate. The window for meaningful action to reduce our impact on the Earth’s atmosphere is rapidly closing and the impact of inaction increasing. In the last few month we have seen at least three ‘unprecedented’ events in the United States, Hurricanes Harvey and Irma and the mega-fires burning through the West. These events are going to become the new normal unless we act immediately and aggressively to transition from fossil to renewable energy. The policy goals I propose to make this a reality are:
1) Initiate an ‘Apollo’ project to transition away from fossil fuels.
2) Require oil and gas companies to map and disclose all pipelines.
3) Require fracking companies to disclose the exact composition of their fracking fluids.
4) Eliminate all exploration and development subsidies for oil and gas.
5) Aggressively grow public transportation, particularly RTD light rail to Boulder and Longmont.
6) Invest in research, development, and construction of next-generation power grid and electrical storage infrastructure.
It is reprehensible that the United States, the wealthiest country in the history of mankind, allows millions of its citizens to go without basic healthcare. That we encourage corporations to make profits off the suffering and illness of others, often bankrupting them and destroying lives, is unacceptable. Providing comprehensive health care for all Americans is an economic issue as well as a human rights issue. We must provide a safety net for all that removes the terror of losing everything to illness.
1) Implement universal single payer health care.
2) Ensure that all Americans have access to comprehensive health care, including eye, dental, and mental health services.
3) Require that drugs developed from federally funded research are provided at an affordable cost.
4) Ban the practice of predatory pricing by drug companies for life-saving medication.
5) Allow for re-importation of prescription drugs to reduce costs.
Our National Parks, Forests, Monuments, and Wilderness Areas are a common resource held in trust for future generations. They are also under threat from those that seek to sell them off, drill in them for oil, mine them for uranium, and in any other way destroy them for short-term profit. Instead of seeing these lands as a resource to monetize, we must protect them as the critical habitats they are both for ourselves, future generations, and the wildlife that call them home.
1) National parks, wilderness areas, and monuments should never be sold or developed for commercial use.
2) Funding for the forest service should be increased to account for the increased use and impacts in the urban-forest boundaries.
3) Implement Migration greenways to connect significant wildlands.
4) Federally fund forest mitigation efforts to reduce dangers due to catastrophic forest fires.
Fake news. Hacked elections. Gerrymandered districts. The core principles of our form of government are being undermined. It is time to reinvigorate the spirit of democracy and ensure that every American has an opportunity to participate and have their voice heard. We need to return campaigns to the people, not the corporations, and ensure that voting is made easier for all Americans, not harder.
1) Overturn Citizens United.
2) Reduce the role of fundraising in campaigns through a public option.
3) Require electronic voting systems software to be open-source and provide a human-verifiable vote record.
4) Reinstitute protections in the Voting Rights Act.
Technology and Innovation
The United States has long led the world in research and innovation. Current policy decisions threaten to end that and eliminate our leadership role. Our current position as the dominant innovative force in the world depends on our continued investment in basic and applied research, equal access to the tools of innovation, and policies that encourage creativity.
1) Protect an open and free internet by codifying net neutrality.
2) Reinstate privacy rules that protect personal information online.
3) Increase basic research funding across agencies to ensure continued innovation.
4) Require federally funded research to be openly and freely accessible to all.