Climate change a priority for new Senator Brian Schatz
On Dec. 26, Hawaii Governor Neil Abercrombie announced his selection to fill the US Senate seat left vacant by Senator Daniel K. Inouye’s passing on Dec. 17. Lt. Governor Brian Schatz will assume the position and will serve through 2014, at which time the seat will be up for re-election.
In his acceptance speech, Lt. Governor Schatz named just a couple of top issues that he will tackle. Among them was climate change. “I believe global climate change is real and it is the most urgent challenge of our generation,” said the soon-to-be Senator.
Earlier this month, Lt. Governor Schatz gave the opening address at the Pacific Islands Regional Climate Forum held at the East-West Center, which convened over 200 scientists, decision makers, and interested members of the public to review and discuss findings of the 2012 Pacific Islands Regional Climate Assessment report. A champion of climate change adaptation, Schatz also supported the development of priority guidelines to address climate change, which were added to the State Planning Act through Hawaii’s Act 286 last year.
Lt. Governor Schatz will leave tonight for Washington D.C. to assume the Senate seat representing Hawaii. He promised in his remarks that he would continue to stay in contact with and work with the University of Hawaii and other groups here in the islands.