State of Tennessee Archives: on Environment

Marquita Bradshaw: Grew up near Superfund Site, can't afford to be sick

My childhood South Memphis community is within walking distance of a National Priority List Superfund Site. The pollution contaminates the air, soil, surface water, groundwater, and aquifers still today. The chemicals are mutagenic in the decommissioned military landfill. The chemicals in the landfill are very effective in inducing sickness and killing of plants and people. As a black woman, I can't afford to be sick and don't have time to be tired because lives are at stake.
Source: Sierra Club 2020 Tennessee Senate endorsement Jun 19, 2020

Bill Hagerty: Eliminate senseless EPA interference on farmers

Agriculture is vital to Tennessee's economy. Bill will work to eliminate senseless EPA interference and fight to cut unnecessary regulations. He will pass a Farm Bill for farmers and support President Trump's efforts to get fair access to global markets.
Source: 2020 Tennessee Senate campaign website Dec 24, 2019

Marquita Bradshaw: I'm an environmental justice activist at my core

Bradshaw, a board member of the Tennessee chapter of the Sierra Club, was previously an organizer with the American Federation of Government Employees, the AFL-CIO and the Mid-South Peace and Justice Center, among other groups. "Because I'm an environmental justice activist at my core, I want to make sure that policies ensure that people have healthy and safe places to live, learn, work, worship and recreate," Bradshaw tells the Scene. "We need all of those to be a whole individual."
Source: Nashville Scene on 2020 Tennessee Senate race Oct 3, 2019

Marsha Blackburn: Cut budget of Environmental Protection Administration

Q: Support cutbacks in Environmental Protection Administration?

Marsha Blackburn (R): Yes. Has voted to cut budget. Also proposed merging with Dept of Energy and cutting budget.

Phil Bredesen (D): No specific stand, but enacted major environmental regulations as governor.

Source: 2018 Issue Guide on Tennessee Senate race Oct 9, 2018

Phil Bredesen: Supports environmental regulation by government

Q: Support cutbacks in Environmental Protection Administration?

Marsha Blackburn (R): Yes. Has voted to cut budget. Also proposed merging with Dept of Energy and cutting budget.

Phil Bredesen (D): No specific stand, but enacted major environmental regulations as governor.

Source: 2018 Issue Guide on Tennessee Senate race Oct 9, 2018

Karl Dean: Cuts to the EPA are unthinkable

Our environment--including access to clean air and clean water--have a big impact on our health. As Mayor of Nashville, Karl was committed to environmental stewardship, creating a dedicated Office of Sustainability. This office worked to expand the city's recycling program, conserve open lands by adding 25 percent more park space and reduce the energy use of government buildings with more efficient features. Karl's administration also worked to reduce pollutants in the city's waterways with new water-sewer infrastructure. Nashville is greener and more environmentally-friendly today because of Karl's leadership.

Current proposed federal budget changes call for historic cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency, a department created to regulate air and water pollutants. The cuts would bring the department's funding to its lowest levels in 40 years. These cuts are unthinkable, especially in the wake of large environmental disasters like the TVA coal ash spill in 2008.

Source: 2018 Tennessee Gubernatorial campaign website Mar 21, 2018

David Kustoff: Help farming community's low commodity prices

Strengthening Rural Economy: Our farmers have been hurt by a decline in commodity prices. I think we have an obligation to do what we can to help our farming community. If we don't help, we're going to have to start importing our food from foreign countries. "To be truly free, a country must be able to feed itself, fuel itself, and fight for itself."--Gov. Mike Huckabee
Source: 2016 Tennessee House campaign website Nov 8, 2016

Bill Haslam: 35 million visits annually to Tennessee State Parks

There are a lot of things that state government is responsible for and that we're accomplishing that you may not know about. I still learn something new from our departments all of the time. For example: All that work starts with a state government that is up to the task. That means a customer-focused government that recruits, retains and rewards the best and brightest employees to serve.
Source: State of the State address to 2015 Tennessee Legislature Feb 9, 2015

Gordon Ball: No one has the right to pollute America's air and water

No one has the right to pollute America's air and water. Not business, not industry, and not even TVA. When a manufacturer or factory uses the land, we must demand that they put the land they used back into the same condition it was when they found it. You can depend on me as Senator to continue what I've done all my life--fight polluters.

I grew up on the Pigeon River and saw first hand what paper companies have been doing to the river and Tennessee communities for a century. I've sued them over and over again to force them to clean up the river or pay landowners.

TVA has done a lot for Tennessee. But TVA is also one of the worst polluters in America. For instance, we've had an environmental disaster at the TVA Kingston Steam plant, when fly-ash was allowed to accumulate to dangerous levels. I'll press the EPA to pursue polluters--whether it's TVA or a paper mill--and bring them to justice. As your Senator, I will fight polluters, regardless of who they are or where they are located.

Source: 2014 Tennessee Senate campaign website, Aug 7, 2014

Gordon Ball: Class-action lawsuits against paper companies' dumped waste

If Terry Adams can bash corporations verbally, Ball can boast of having taken it to them in a series of class-action suits. He can sit down with a table-full of labor representative, as he did recently in Memphis, and talk about strategies for raising the minimum wage. For environmentalists, he has the tale of how, "over and over," he sued the paper companies that had dumped waste into the Pigeon River of his native East Tennessee and forced them to pay for cleanup.
Source: Memphis Flyer on 2014 Tennessee Senate race Aug 6, 2014

Joe Carr: Require photographic evidence of animal abuse

Joe Carr voted Yea on HB 1191--Vote to pass a bill that requires disclosure of photographic evidence of animal abuse. Highlights:
Source: VoteSmart summary of 2013-2014 Tennessee voting record Apr 17, 2013

Joe Carr: Rated 40% on voting record by Tennessee Conservation Voters

Organizational Description: "Tennessee Conservation Voters (TCV) is a statewide non-partisan, non-profit organization dedicated to the protection of Tennessee's environment and preservation of the state's natural resources through effective legislative and administrative advocacy. TCV focuses its resources on making environmental protection a top priority for Tennessee's elected officials, political candidates and voters

"If a legislator voted for a pro-environment bill or against an anti-environment bill, he/she got a +1. If he/she voted for an anti-environment bill or against a pro-environment bill, he/she got a -1."

Source: VoteSmart ratings for 2012 Tennessee legislative session Jul 23, 2012

Bill Haslam: Haslam's Pilot company cited for 70 environmental violations

Haslam is the former president of Pilot, a Knoxville-based petroleum company that operates a chain of truck-fueling stations. Bill Haslam captained Pilot for 13 years before he was elected mayor of Knoxville in 2003. During his tenure at Pilot, he grew the company, which was founded by his grandfather, from 80 to more than 300 truck stops in 39 states. Pilot has come under environmental fire for racking up 50 state and 20 federal violations of contamination rules for petroleum storage tanks.
Source: Amanda Little on, "Tennessee Paradox" Oct 28, 2010

Phil Bredesen: Public-private foundation to preserve Cumberland Plateau

The Cumberland Plateau is one of the most beautiful and biologically diverse places on the planet, and yet it is being clear cut, vast tracts of land owned by timber companies are on the market, and in many cases are being bought by speculators from out of state. I am proposing the establishment of a public-private foundation, perhaps called the Cumberland Plateau Foundation, that can preserve these lands for the future. I have placed in the budget $10 million of one-time money to start the process.

I want to expand the vision in the years ahead to other areas as well, areas like the Mississippi River Corridor, the Appalachians, the river valleys and others. Outdoor spaces are important to our people's health, they are important to the preservation of our heritage, and to attracting people who will create jobs. My dream is that a generation from now, our children and grandchildren will have protected land for their use, for enjoying the beauty of God's creation here in Tennessee.

Source: State of the State address for 2005 to Tennessee legislature Jan 31, 2005

Phil Bredesen: $10M to partially restore cuts in land acquisition fund

We are proposing that $8 million of this year's surplus be added to the TIIPS fund for industrial infrastructure investment; that $11 million be allocated to job training, primarily for two specific industrial projects with Nissan and Toyota; and for $10 million to support the truly visionary biotech initiative in Memphis.

For me, one of last year's most personally painful cuts was in the land acquisition fund. While I was not able this year to fully restore these funds, I am proposing to allocate $10 million of this year's surplus as a one-time contribution to begin making that fund whole once again.

Source: 2012 Tennessee State of the State address Feb 2, 2004

Don Sundquist: Supports new State Forest and 23 new natural areas

Part of our dream is to keep Tennessee beautiful. Just in the last six years, we’ve added 23 new natural areas covering thousands of acres. Thanks to private donations and the cooperation of government agencies, this land has come at very little cost and requires only minor maintenance.

In rugged areas of East Tennessee, elk run free for the first time in 135 years. For the first time in over 50 years, Tennessee has a new State Forest, the Gulf Tract in Cocke County. It’s 6,800 acres nestled between two national forests alongside the Appalachian Trail. It’s filled with diverse hardwoods, native trout streams and black bear.

Tennessee’s rivers and lakes are cleaner than they’ve been in over 25 years. Our soil is cleaner. Our air is cleaner. We’re cleaning up our environment, and the eagle has returned to soar over Tennessee. These are just some of the ways that, together, we are protecting, conserving and managing Tennessee’s treasures for generations to come.

Source: 2001 State of the State Address to Tennessee legislature Jan 29, 2001

  • The above quotations are from State of Tennessee Politicians: Archives.
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2020 Presidential contenders on Environment:
  Democrats running for President:
Sen.Michael Bennet (D-CO)
V.P.Joe Biden (D-DE)
Mayor Mike Bloomberg (I-NYC)
Gov.Steve Bullock (D-MT)
Mayor Pete Buttigieg (D-IN)
Sen.Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Secy.Julian Castro (D-TX)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Rep.John Delaney (D-MD)
Rep.Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI)
Sen.Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Gov.Deval Patrick (D-MA)
Sen.Bernie Sanders (I-VT)
CEO Tom Steyer (D-CA)
Sen.Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Marianne Williamson (D-CA)
CEO Andrew Yang (D-NY)

2020 Third Party Candidates:
Rep.Justin Amash (L-MI)
CEO Don Blankenship (C-WV)
Gov.Lincoln Chafee (L-RI)
Howie Hawkins (G-NY)
Gov.Gary Johnson(L-NM)
Howard Schultz(I-WA)
Gov.Jesse Ventura (I-MN)
Republicans running for President:
Sen.Ted Cruz(R-TX)
Gov.Larry Hogan (R-MD)
Gov.John Kasich(R-OH)
V.P.Mike Pence(R-IN)
Gov.Mark Sanford (R-SC)
Pres.Donald Trump(R-NY)
Rep.Joe Walsh (R-IL)
Gov.Bill Weld(R-MA & L-NY)

2020 Withdrawn Democratic Candidates:
Sen.Stacey Abrams (D-GA)
Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-NYC)
Sen.Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Sen.Mike Gravel (D-AK)
Sen.Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Gov.John Hickenlooper (D-CO)
Gov.Jay Inslee (D-WA)
Mayor Wayne Messam (D-FL)
Rep.Seth Moulton (D-MA)
Rep.Beto O`Rourke (D-TX)
Rep.Tim Ryan (D-CA)
Adm.Joe Sestak (D-PA)
Rep.Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
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Page last updated: Oct 14, 2021