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Congressman Mike Quigley

Representing the 5th District of Illinois

More Work Left to do on Earth Day

Apr 11, 2013

Today, U.S. Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05) invoked the memory of Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson, the founder of Earth Day, while highlighting the environmental work Congress has left to do.

Below is video and a transcription of this speech.

Mister Speaker, the founder of Earth Day, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson, was asked in 2005, just before his death at the age of 89, if Earth Day should be celebrated.

"Our work's not finished, he replied, "There's a lot more to be done."

As we enter wildfire season, watershed infrastructure that would mitigate future contamination of local rivers and reservoirs is still being rebuilt from last season. And funding for rebuilding is only now being allocated, having been delayed under sequestration, affecting lives and homes.

We've yet to craft an agenda that talks of a multi-year transportation plan or climate change. And, of course the green legislator at heart would love to see tools like the Antiquities Act as a job-creating mechanism, rather than spend time on the floor fighting against rolling back NEPA as we're doing this week with H.R. 678, unnecessarily, at the expense of supporting hydropower, as we should.

Our work's not finished. There's a lot more to be done.