Inslee statement on climate protests at the state Capitol

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"I fully support the right to free speech and peaceful assembly. I applaud all individuals for standing for what they believe in, and those who recognize the risk that climate change poses to our future and that of our children and grandchildren.

"As the urgency of this issue grows -- touching every community in every state -- we need more voices pushing the issue to the forefront of public debate. Everyone has a stake in a future free from the risk of catastrophic climate change.

"I have consistently worked within the authority of state government to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to the fullest extent possible. This includes working tirelessly in the Legislature to pass carbon pricing and other clean energy policies, taking our battle to cap carbon emissions to the state’s highest court and applying the best science and strictest environmental reviews to new projects seeking to locate in our state. Washington is a national leader in setting policy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and we encourage other governments to follow suit.

"I know that friends and allies are in Olympia today standing up for our future. However, some of the protesters have urged tactics that I don't agree with. It has been suggested, by some, that the climate situation is so dire we need not follow the law or courts to make progress on climate goals.

"As long as I am governor, I will work within the legal parameters to push as hard and as quickly as I can for action on climate change. This includes legislation, extensive environmental review, permitting and appropriate use of emergency powers to address immediate public health and safety concerns.

"On this we agree, there is no time to waste."

Media Contacts

Tara Lee
Governor Inslee’s Communications Office