I hope you had a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends!
November was a busy month, filled with exciting opportunities. For example, I was able to participate in COP26, the annual United Nations Climate Change Conference.
Advocating for Change at COP26
Thousands of people, including scientists, elected officials, and community leaders from around the globe, gathered in Glasgow, Scotland last month for COP26. It was an honor to be one of more than 60 Minnesotans who were there to call for action at every level of government. Our goal was to push for bold commitments to fight climate change in the U.S. and other countries, to share information with other attendees, and to return with new information and ideas. I’m excited to share my experiences and to apply what we learned here in Minnesota.
I arrived in Glasgow on November 5, just in time to participate in the Climate Strike. It was inspiring to be among the tens of thousands of people who took to the streets to call for transformational climate action!
I attended several panels during my time at COP26 and had a chance to speak as well. One of the events highlighted what we’re doing to address climate change in the Midwest, as well as the work that still needs to be done. I talked about dozens of bills that members of the Minnesota House Climate Action Caucus have introduced and what we’re doing with Minnesotans to work towards a future where all of us can thrive.
Connecting with Minnesotans
I also had the opportunity to connect with people in Minnesota and in our community. At the beginning of the month, I visited a Novel Energy Solutions solar garden with some of my fellow lawmakers. We learned more about the site and barriers that can prevent proposed solar projects from being built. It’s important that we solve this issue so we can implement more renewable energy in our state.
I joined lawmakers from the House Capital Investment Committee two weeks ago when they made a stop in the western suburbs. The committee is visiting sites across Minnesota that could receive support in a future bonding bill. This allows the legislators to see a community’s needs firsthand and to talk with people who live and work in the area.
The City of Minnetonka is seeking state investment for two local projects. One would improve public space in the Opus area, and the other would expand a community trail along Hopkins Crossroads. I’ll keep advocating for these important projects.
In late October, the Center for Energy and Environment (CEE) presented me with the 2021 Energy Efficiency Champion Award. This award is given to Minnesotans who help create cost-effective energy efficiency opportunities. I’m grateful to be recognized for my work on clean energy bills that were signed into law this year, such as the Energy Conservation and Optimization (ECO) Act.
As you may know, a new variant of COVID-19 has been identified in several countries. While it will take some time for scientists to learn more about the Omicron variant, getting vaccinated is currently the best way to protect yourself and others. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is now recommending booster shots for all vaccinated people who are 18 years old or older. I’m grateful I was able to get one last week!
If you received the Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, you become eligible for a booster shot six months after your second dose. If you got the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, you can get a booster shot two months after your initial dose. You can find a list of booster shot providers in your area here. If you aren’t vaccinated yet, check out Minnesota’s Vaccine Locator Map. More information about vaccines for children between the ages of 5 and 11 is available at mn.gov/vaxforkids.
Please reach out if you have any questions or if I can be of assistance. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (651) 296-9934.