Climate Advocates Meet with Senator Hanger

Hanger24On May 8, six constituents of Senator Emmett Hanger met with him at Valley Pike Farm Market (his choice).  Present were:   Joni and Les Grady, Sally Newkirk,  Erik Curren of Staunton (author of The Solar Patriot, Staunton city councilman, and consultant with Secure Futures (solar company), Sandy Greene, local conservationist, naturalist, and solar advocate, and Joy Loving.

The meeting lasted about 1 ½ hours.  We talked about the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative – RGGI,  and Distributed Solar.  The agenda is below.  We took turns speaking and each of us focused on different areas.  We scripted it loosely and more or less took our cues from him.  It was really a conversation.  We gave him background materials, including two books and a “solar primer” full of pictures.  We thanked him for his efforts on Medicaid expansion and on Chesapeake Bay restoration.  Erik gave him a copy of his book and Joy gave him a copy of Virginia Climate Fever by Steve Nash.

The Senator was receptive, cordial, and engaged, and he offered suggestions on how to reach out to other legislators and whom to consider contacting.  He also recommended we try to develop a business coalition similar to one he is aware of around the I-81 corridor improvements and see if we could get anywhere with the Chamber of Commerce, using a market/business approach.  He is already familiar with the idea of the trade part of cap and trade because of the “nutrient trading” program that has been in effect for some time as part of Chesapeake Bay cleanup.  He offered to meet with us again; we’re thinking early September but haven’t tried to schedule anything yet.

RGGI Discussion with Senator Hanger, May 8, 2018

  • What is Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) bill, SB 696/HB 1273? Virginia Alternative Energy and Coastal Protection Act, a Carbon Cap and Trade Carbon Reduction Program
  • RGGI Bill Provisions
  • RGGI Regulations Provisions: 9VAC5-140. Regulation for Emissions Trading Programs, Published January 8, 2018
  • Difference between Regulations and SB 696
  • Alternatives and Opposition to RGGI
  • Benefits
  • Moving Forward for 2019 General Assembly Session

Solar Discussion with Senator Hanger, May 8, 2018

  • Intro to Erik Curren’s book and its premise, that America and Virginia need a clean energy revolution not just for climate but to create jobs and build resilience
  • Popularity of rooftop solar across political spectrum, especially among conservatives
  • Benefits of distributed rooftop solar over centralized utility solar
  • Answer to utility claim that rooftop solar owners are “free riders” on the grid who shift costs to non-solar ratepayers, many of whom are low income — the truth is the opposite in fact, that solar owners give more value to the grid in peak demand reduction, and their non-solar neighbors, than they receive in net metering payments

– Joy Loving, May 2018

From the Daily News-Record, June 1, 2018

Sen. Hanger’s Efforts To Listen To Constituents To Be Applauded

RECENTLY, SIX CONSTITUENTS of Sen. Emmett Hanger, R- Mount Solon, sat down with him at the Valley Pike Farm Market (his suggestion).

The senator agreed to meet during a brief time when he was not in Richmond for the special April/ May sessions. He was engaged in delicate negotiations with members of his party regarding Medicaid expansion. Even so, he was attentive and engaged during our meeting, readily offering his reactions to the matters we raised and his responses to our questions.

Del. David Toscano, D- Charlottesville, offered high praise: “The House budget, with the amendments proposed by Senator Hanger, is perhaps the best budget that I have seen in my time at the General Assembly. If the budget comes to the House with these good amendments, I will enthusiastically support it.”

To that I add my gratitude for the senator’s efforts on behalf of his constituents during his tenure in the State Senate.

Joy Loving Grottoes