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Terri Sewell on Environment

 

 


League of Conservation Voters: highest score from Alabama

Sewell earned the highest score with a 90. "As a Representative of constituents disproportionately impacted by environmental injustices, I am proud to fight for stronger environmental protections for our communities," Sewell said. "I am proud to receive the highest score from the League of Conservation Voters in Alabama's Congressional Delegation. I remain committed to doing everything in my power to ensure we create a better, healthier, and more equitable environment for future generations."
Source: Alabama Political Reporter on 2022 Alabama Senate race , Feb 22, 2021

Rated 13% by HSLF, indicating an anti-animal welfare voting record.

Sewell scores 13% by the Humane Society on animal rights issues

112th Mid-Term Humane Scorecard: The Humane Society Legislative Fund has posted the final version of the 2011 Humane Scorecard, where you can track the performance of your federal lawmakers on key animal protection issues during last year. We rated legislators based on their voting behavior on measures such as agribusiness subsidies, lethal predator control, and the Endangered Species Act; their cosponsorship of priority bills on puppy mills, horse slaughter, animal fighting, and chimps in research; their support for funding the enforcement of animal welfare laws; and their leadership on animal protection. All of the priority bills whose cosponsorships we're counting enjoy strong bipartisan support; in the House, each of the four now has more than 150 cosponsors.

The Humane Scorecard is not a perfect measuring tool, but creating some reasonable yardstick and allowing citizens to hold lawmakers accountable is central to our work. When the Humane Scorecard comes out each year, it helps clarify how the animal protection movement is doing geographically, by party affiliation, and in other categories. It helps us chart our course for animals by seeing where we have been effective, and where we need to improve.

Source: HSLF website 12-HumaneH on Jan 13, 2012

No EPA permits required for forest road runoff.

Sewell co-sponsored Silviculture Regulatory Consistency Act

Congressional Summary:Amends the Clean Water Act to prohibit the EPA from requiring permits for a discharge of stormwater runoff resulting from silviculture activities.

Opponent's argument against bill: (Evergreen Magazine and Washington Forest Law Center): In Aug. 2010, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled unanimously that polluted stormwater generated by logging roads is subject to regulation under the Clean Water Act. [The ruling meant] that rain runoff from forest roads constituted an industrial (not forestry) activity, which should be considered a "point source" discharge under the CWA. The lawsuit was brought because forest roads have been dumping sediment into rivers that support myriad species of salmon and resident trout, all of which are at risk from the pollution. The ruling will require State agencies to issue permits and ensure that road construction and maintenance practices limit or eliminate such discharges.

In March 2013, the US Supreme Court reversed the Ninth Circuit: permits are not required for stormwater discharges from pipes, ditches and channels along logging roads. [This legislation supports the Supreme Court ruling, against the Ninth Circuit conclusion].

Proponent's argument for bill: (Press release by sponsors):

Sen. WYDEN (D-OR): "We need a healthy timber industry to provide timber jobs and to do the restoration work that ensures healthy forests. The way to do that is to stop litigating questions that have already been answered."

Sen. CRAPO (R-ID): "The jobs and economic activities relating to the forest products industry are critical to the Pacific Northwest. The Clean Water Act was not intended to regulate stormwater runoff on forest roads."

Rep. HERRERA BEUTLER (R-WA): "At the heart of our efforts are the moms and dads employed by healthy, working forests--and passing this law will help make sure they have jobs, and will help make our forests healthy."

Source: S.971 / H.R.2026 13-H2026 on May 16, 2013

Extend to 2023 Superfund hazardous waste cleanup.

Sewell co-sponsored Superfund Reinvestment Act

Congressional summary: Authorizes the use of funds in the Hazardous Substance Superfund for environmental cleanup costs under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA). Provides that disbursements of the Hazardous Substance Superfund:

  1. shall not be counted as new deficit for purposes of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, or the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010;
  2. shall be exempt from any general budget limitations; and
  3. shall be available only for the purposes specified in CERCLA.
      Authorizes Superfund through Dec. 31, 2023.

      Proponent's argument in favor (Sponsor's introductory remarks): Last week, the House passed legislation [outlined below] to weaken and fragment the already underfunded federal Superfund program. I am reintroducing legislation to reauthorize Superfund taxes on polluting industries; and provide more funds to clean up toxic waste sites. The Superfund program has resulted in the cleanup of more than 1,000 toxic waste sites. In the majority of cases, EPA works with the parties who have been found responsible for the pollution and they pay for the cleanup. [My bill] will reinstate Superfund taxes [on oil, chemicals, and corporations] to their previous levels.

      Opponent's argument against: (Chamber of Commerce's July 29 2013 letter supporting those House-passed bills): The US Chamber of Commerce strongly supports HR2279, the "Reducing Excessive Deadline Obligations Act;" HR2318, the "Federal Facility Accountability Act;" and HR2226, the "Federal and State Partnership for Environmental Protections Act." These three bills aim at modernizing CERCLA. HR2279 removes two impractical and unnecessary deadlines. HR2318 ensures that the federal government is a "good neighbor" when operating a superfund cleanup site. HR2226 would clarify that EPA must consult with the state when selecting a remedial action.

      Source: H.R.3870 14-H3870 on Jan 14, 2014

      Voted YES to require GMO labeling.

      Sewell voted YEA DARK Act

      A BILL to require the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a national disclosure standard for bioengineered foods.

      Cato Institute recommendation on voting YES: President Obama quietly signed legislation requiring special labeling for commercial foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs)--plants and animals with desirable genetic traits that were directly implanted in a laboratory. Most of the foods that humans & animals have consumed for millennia have been genetically modified, by cross-fertilization. Yet the new law targets only the highly precise gene manipulations done in laboratories. Anti-GMO activists oppose the new law because it preempts more rigorous regulation. And that's exactly the goal of this bill, to the frustration of the anti-GMO crowd.

      JustLabelit.org recommendation on voting NO (because not restrictive enough): Senators Roberts (R-KS) and Stabenow (D-MI) introduced a compromise bill that would create a mandatory, national labeling standard for GMO foods. This bill falls short of what consumers expect--a simple at-a-glance disclosure on the package. As written, this compromise might not even apply to ingredients derived from GMO soybeans and GMO sugar beets. We in the consumer rights community have dubbed this the "Deny Americans the Right-to-Know" Act (DARK Act). We need to continue pressing for mandatory GMO labeling on the package.

      Heritage Foundation recommendation on voting NO (because too restrictive): The House should allow [states, at their choice,] to impose [a more] restrictive labeling mandate, but prohibit the state from regulating out-of-state food manufacturers engaged in interstate commerce. Instituting a new, sweeping, federal mandate that isn't based on proven science shouldn't even be an option.

      Legislative outcome: Passed by the Senate on July 7th, passed by the House on July 14th; signed by the President on July 29th

      Source: Congressional vote 16-S0764 on Jun 23, 2016

      Keep restrictive rules for predator control in Alaska.

      Sewell voted NAY Disapprove Subsistence Hunting Rule on ANWR

      Library of Congress Summary: This joint resolution nullifies the rule finalized by the Department of the Interior on Aug. 5, 2016, relating to non-subsistence takings of wildlife and public participation and closure procedures on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska.

      Case for voting YES by House Republican Policy Committee: The Fish and Wildlife Service rule--which lays claim to more than 20% of Alaska--violates ANILCA (Alaska National Interest Land Conservation Act) and the Alaska Statehood Compact. Not only does [the existing 2016 rule] undermine Alaska's ability to manage fish and wildlife upon refuge lands, it fundamentally destroys a cooperative relationship between Alaska and the federal government.

      Case for voting NO by the Sierra Club (April 6, 2017):

      • President Trump signed H.J. Res. 69, overturning the rule that banned "predator control" on federal wildlife refuges in Alaska unless "based on sound science in response to a conservation concern."
      • Any rule mentioning "sound science" is in trouble under a Trump administration.
      • So what kinds of practices will the Trump administration now allow on our federal wildlife refuges? Activities that include shooting or trapping wolves while in their dens with pups, or hunting for grizzly bears from airplanes.
      • It's all about ensuring a maximum yield of prey species like elk, moose, and caribou for the real apex predator: humans. So if having more elk requires killing wolf pups in their dens, then so be it.
      • The Obama administration's rule (which Trump revoked) never tried to stop all hunting. Subsistence hunting was still allowed. What's changed is that the predators on federal wildlife refuges are now under the control of the state of Alaska. And that makes them prey.
      Legislative outcome: Passed Senate, 52-47-1, March 21; passed House, 225-193-12, Feb. 16; signed by Pres. Trump April 3.
      Source: Congressional vote 18-HJR69 on Feb 16, 2017

      2021-22 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Environment: Terri Sewell on other issues:
      AL Gubernatorial:
      Chris Countryman
      David Carrington
      Kay Ivey
      Lynda Blanchard
      Parker Griffith
      Robert Bentley
      Stacy Lee George
      Tommy Battle
      Walt Maddox
      AL Senatorial:
      Arnold Mooney
      Bradley Byrne
      Doug Jones
      Jeff Sessions
      John Rogers
      Luther Strange
      Marcus Bowman
      Ron Crumpton
      Roy Moore
      Tommy Tuberville
      Republican Freshman class of 2021:
      AL-1: Jerry Carl(R)
      AL-2: Barry Moore(R)
      CA-8: Jay Obernolte(R)
      CA-50: Darrell Issa(R)
      CO-3: Lauren Boebert(R)
      FL-3: Kat Cammack(R)
      FL-15: Scott Franklin(R)
      FL-19: Byron Donalds(R)
      GA-9: Andrew Clyde(R)
      GA-14: Marjorie Taylor Greene(R)
      IA-2: Mariannette Miller-Meeks(R)
      IA-4: Randy Feenstra(R)
      IL-15: Mary Miller(R)
      IN-5: Victoria Spartz(R)
      KS-1: Tracey Mann(R)
      KS-2: Jake LaTurner(R)
      LA-5: Luke Letlow(R)
      MI-3: Peter Meijer(R)
      MI-10: Lisa McClain(R)
      MT-0: Matt Rosendale(R)
      NC-11: Madison Cawthorn(R)
      NM-3: Teresa Leger Fernandez(D)
      NY-2: Andrew Garbarino(R)
      NY-22: Claudia Tenney(R)
      OR-2: Cliff Bentz(R)
      PR-0: Jenniffer Gonzalez-Colon(R)
      TN-1: Diana Harshbarger(R)
      TX-4: Pat Fallon(R)
      TX-11: August Pfluger(R)
      TX-13: Ronny Jackson(R)
      TX-17: Pete Sessions(R)
      TX-22: Troy Nehls(R)
      TX-23: Tony Gonzales(R)
      TX-24: Beth Van Duyne(R)
      UT-1: Blake Moore(R)
      VA-5: Bob Good(R)
      WI-5: Scott Fitzgerald(R)
      Incoming Democratic Freshman class of 2021:
      CA-53: Sara Jacobs(D)
      GA-5: Nikema Williams(D)
      GA-7: Carolyn Bourdeaux(D)
      HI-2: Kai Kahele(D)
      IL-3: Marie Newman(D)
      IN-1: Frank Mrvan(D)
      MA-4: Jake Auchincloss(D)
      MO-1: Cori Bush(D)
      NC-2: Deborah Ross(D)
      NC-6: Kathy Manning(D)
      NY-15: Ritchie Torres(D)
      NY-16: Jamaal Bowman(D)
      NY-17: Mondaire Jones(D)
      WA-10: Marilyn Strickland(D)

      Republican takeovers as of 2021:
      CA-21: David Valadao(R) defeated T.J. Cox(D)
      CA-39: Young Kim(R) defeated Gil Cisneros(D)
      CA-48: Michelle Steel(R) defeated Harley Rouda(D)
      FL-26: Carlos Gimenez(R) defeated Debbie Mucarsel-Powell(D)
      FL-27: Maria Elvira Salazar(R) defeated Donna Shalala(D)
      IA-1: Ashley Hinson(R) defeated Abby Finkenauer(D)
      MN-7: Michelle Fischbach(R) defeated Collin Peterson(D)
      NM-2: Yvette Herrell(R) defeated Xochitl Small(D)
      NY-11: Nicole Malliotakis(R) defeated Max Rose(D)
      OK-5: Stephanie Bice(R) defeated Kendra Horn(D)
      SC-1: Nancy Mace(R) defeated Joe Cunningham(D)
      UT-4: Burgess Owens(R) defeated Ben McAdams(D)

      Special Elections 2021-2022:
      CA-22: replacing Devin Nunes (R, SPEL summer 2022)
      FL-20: replacing Alcee Hastings (D, SPEL Jan. 2022)
      LA-2: Troy Carter (R, April 2021)
      LA-5: Julia Letlow (R, March 2021)
      NM-1: Melanie Stansbury (D, June 2021)
      OH-11: Shontel Brown (D, Nov. 2021)
      OH-15: Mike Carey (R, Nov. 2021)
      TX-6: Jake Ellzey (R, July 2021)
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      Page last updated: Feb 16, 2022