Ahead of President Biden’s Visit to Boulder County, Colorado Leaders Push for Climate Action to Prevent Further Tragedies

Senator Hickenlooper, Representative Neguse, and other Colorado leaders call for the passage of the Build Back Better Act after the Marshall Fire destroyed homes and devastated communities.

DENVER, Colo. –  Today, President Biden will visit Boulder County after the Marshall Fire in Colorado destroyed almost 1,000 homes and businesses, sending families scrambling to find shelter as the pandemic surged and a winter storm loomed. Colorado has been hit especially hard by climate disaster after climate disaster, state and local leaders are ringing the alarm and demanding bold immediate action to tackle the climate crisis and protect our communities. 

Ahead of President Biden and the first lady’s visit to Colorado, local leaders issued the following statements urging for immediate climate action: 

Boulder Mayor Aaron Brockett said: “It has been an incredibly difficult year for our community. Tragedy struck our families in many forms, but we have persevered thanks to a strong sense of unity and generosity to our neighbors. And while we come together in the face of tragedy, we cannot tackle the climate crisis alone. We need leaders in the Senate to step up and pass legislation that will ensure our town, and towns like it across the nation are protected from climate disasters like the Marshall Fire. Our children deserve to grow, learn, and thrive in stable and safe environments. Congress has the opportunity to deliver that now, and I hope the events here in Boulder County this month will motivate them to move quickly.”  

Louisville Mayor Ashley Stolzmann released the following statement, “This year has taken a toll on our communities, and the devastating Marshall Fire is just one of many climate catastrophes that has struck Colorado. During what is supposed to be a joyous time of year, close to forty thousand Coloradans were forced to flee their homes and many lost everything. Years of hard work and memories, gone in an instant. We are at a tipping point, and communities like mine cannot wait any longer. If leaders in the Senate do not work to pass critical climate legislation like the Build Back Better Act, we will soon be at the point of no return. It is now or never to protect our families against the worsening climate crisis. My community is rebuilding today, and I have faith that our leaders will rise to the challenge to prevent more communities from facing what we have.”

In a press conference held by Climate Power and the League of Conservation Voters earlier this week, Sen. John Hickenlooper said: “It is ridiculous that we still are willing to avoid what is a scientific truth… and subject cities and towns and communities all across this country to the same agony that the Marshall Fire has caused.” 

U.S. Representative Joe Neguse noted the historic nature of the catastrophic fires, saying: “These are unprecedented wildfires that have just created a level of devastation and destruction that our state has not experienced before. [….] It’s a reminder that the climate scientists have warned us about for years: that these fires are going to become more pervasive in the years ahead and we’ve got to get serious about resilience and mitigation efforts in the years ahead.” In a statementNeguse, who was forced to evacuate his own home, called on Congress to take action quickly: “Our communities need support, and the Build Back Better Act can help. We cannot expect our communities to bear the burden of this disaster on their own. We must bring the full force of the federal government to bear as our communities work to rebuild and recover.”